“Silence” is the new book by Don Delilo



“Silence” is the title of Don Delilo’s new book (something between a short novel and a novel), published very recently in an extremely good translation (along with a dense and highly penetrating introductory note) by Zoe Bella-Armau by Gut , a very short time after its publication in the USA. The reviews that managed to be published in the big American and British newspapers (from the “New York Times” and the “Washington Post” to the “Guardian”) and the “Observer”) deify the book, hastening to clarify that although its action and atmosphere refer to the coronavirus, what the author seeks in depth is to speak more generally about our difficult times, discreetly recalling the dark prophecies of his older work. Of course, Delilo will end the “Silence” with the outbreak of the first wave of the coronavirus in the US and Europe and he does not deny, in an interview with the “New York Times”, his dystopian message, even if In addition to the pandemic, Delilo’s central theme in “Silence” is technology. In his immediately previous work, “Zero K” (translated by Lambrini Kouzelis by Gutenberg), the narrative begins as a science fiction novel and ends in a kind of existential elegy about the dramatic way in which technology can affect life. and death. In the present book, technology acquires a much more universal and catalytic picture. In an apartment in Manhattan, Jim, Tessa, Max, Diane and Martin have to deal with two amazing events: on the one hand, the crash of the plane they were carrying. the first two from Paris (suddenly everything in the plane goes out and the passengers are saved as if by a miracle) and on the other, the blackening of the screen from which the whole company was going to watch the famous Super Bowl championship.7 Martin goes crazy In front of the erased screen, recalling pandemics, biological wars, laboratory monsters and other, infinite threats that have plagued humanity in recent decades, Max constantly keeps in mind Einstein and the theory of relativity and the rest struggle in vain to recover from Delilo is in the ninth decade of his life, but there is no doubt that he remains one of the most important Am some writers. The images of New York with mobile phones, computers and services turned off, Martin’s delusion, which anthologizes and summarizes the author’s nightmarish motifs from a large number of his books, Max’s obsession with Einstein, which suggests that without technology and its interconnections people are trapped in the vastness of the present (they lose their past and can not look forward to the future), the unbearable feeling of loneliness and isolation, which occupies righteous and unjust, as well as the beastly void that overturns sweeping every norm and normality (no one is going to be the way they used to be), in other words every page and every chapter of the story end up with the same thing – to solemnly confirm its title, to prove that Central arteries and major boulevards to the most secluded alleys, lead to silence. Who can speak, who is able to articulate even one word in a world where everyone is cut off from everyone? And, even worse, who can dare to hope in the slightest? Delilo does not target technology or take on the role of prophet. It only invites us to think about the reality within which we live every day and to think about what is likely to happen if an unforeseen link is broken by its well-built machine. The purpose of literature, after all, is not to comfort anyone, but to ask questions about the fate of all of us, today and tomorrow. Source: ΑΠΕ-ΜΠΕ



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