~EPUB ☪ Moravagine ♂ At Once Truly Appalling And Appallingly Funny, Blaise Cendrars S Moravagine Bears Comparison With Naked Lunch Except That It S A Lot Entertaining To Read Heir To An Immense Aristocratic Fortune, Mental And Physical Mutant Moravagine Is A Monster, A Man In Pursuit Of A Theorem That Will Justify His Every Desire Released From A Hospital For The Criminally Insane By His Starstruck Psychiatrist The Narrator Of The Book , Who Foresees A Companionship In Crime That Will Also Be An Unprecedented Scientific Collaboration, Moravagine Travels From Moscow To San Antonio To Deepest Ia, Engaged In Schemes And Scams As, Among Other Things, Terrorist, Speculator, Gold Prospector, And Pilot He Also Enjoys A Busy Sideline In Rape And Murder At Last, The Two Friends Return To Europe Just In Time For World War I, When The Whole World Was Doing A Moravagine This New Edition Of Cendrars S Underground Classic Is The First In English To Include The Author S Afterword, How I Wrote Moravagine
Let s just say the title translates as both death TO and death BY vagina It s part pulp adventure tale, part embodied manifesto whose main message is that madness and disease are the guiding forces on earth, and all Greatest Dada Novel ever.The early parts are a Rabelaisian misogynistic fever dream across Europe and into Russia where Moravagine, a dadaist writ GIGANTIC, spearheads a revolution But then, after fleeing to the United States, the narrative kind of settles down after the death of the vicious vagina and her foetus , Moravagine becomes guiding spirit than main character, and we get a proto magical realist real deal magical realist novel coursing through the Americas, meeting larger than life swindlers, Blue Indians, and a dapper orangutan, but all bedded in naturalistic detail and local arcana.Then back to Europe for the outbreak of WWI where Moravagine disappears then reappears totally bonkers thinking he s an inhabitant of Mars a claim not discounted by the narrator.Though I ve never read B Traven, this book and Cendrars himself for that matter reminds me of him Mystery man and self mythologizer, Indiana Jones type adventurer, and like one man compounded of a dozen men, bewilderingly human, composed of nothing butlan vital. Book Circle Reads 17Rating 3 sickened stars of five The Publisher Says At once truly appalling and appallingly funny, Blaise Cendrars s Moravagine bears comparison with Naked Lunch except that it s a lot entertaining to read Heir to an immense aristocratic fortune, mental and physical mutant Moravagine is a monster, a man in pursuit of a theorem that will justify his every desire Released from a hospital for the criminally insane by his starstruck psychiatrist the narrator of the book , who foresees a companionship in crime that will also be an unprecedented scientific collaboration, Moravagine travels from Moscow to San Antonio to deepest ia, engaged in schemes and scams as, among other things, terrorist, speculator, gold prospector, and pilot He also enjoys a busy sideline in rape and murder At last, the two friends return to Europe just in time for World War I, when the whole world was doing a Moravagine This new edition of Cendrars s underground classic is the first in English to include the author s afterword, How I Wrote Moravagine My Review Dr Science, the eunuch like shrink of mass murdering rapist and all around criminal Moravagine, relates this hideous tale of debauchery, rapine, pillage, murder, and general good times after springing the title character from the insane asylum where Science worked with him Their world travels on the eve of the Great War involve blood, misery, and death for everyone but themselves.Moravagine, literally death by female genitalia, is not someone you want to meet Hannibal Lecter was positively cuddlesome by Moravagine s standards Science, in his neutral and neutered language, presents the facts of their horrible, horrible crime spree in a way that left me nauseated but curiously unmoved Which mother would not prefer to kill and devour her children if she could be sure in doing so of binding to her and keeping her male, of being permeated by him, absorbing him from below, digesting him, letting him be macerated within her in a state reduced to that of foetus, and carrying him thus her life long in womb This is a slasher movie waiting to happen I ve heard others describe it as funny Not to me Distastefully misogynistic Appallingly bloody I enjoyed one thing about reading the book The author s evident fury and outrage at a world that tacitly accepts the dehumanizing and belittling effects of Modernity without so much as a bleat of resistance Resistance, you see, is futile.Revolting Fascinating Deeply unclean. What to say about this I know it is highly rated as a modernist classic and make no mistake it is very inventive with some fantastical scenes and stories Many reviews I have seen rave about it and compare it to Burroughs Naked Lunch Even Henry Miller loved it I can understand all that and I know it careers through the early twentieth century taking apart many sacred cows and exposing much hypocrisy However I did not like it The title sets the tone Moravagine means Death to or by vagina and the books tone is mercilessly misogynistic It is about a young psychiatrist when discovers a prisoner in an institution Moravagine who has various deformities who is there because he murdered his fiancee He decides it would be a good idea to let him free so they could have adventures together because the fellow is interesting and a son of the King of Hungary They then travel together for the rest of the book moving through Europe, Russia where they attempt to organise a revolution in 1905 as part of what appears to be an anarchist grouping , the US, South America and back to Europe The novel concludes in the First World War Periodically during their travels Moravagine rapes and murders women no vivid descriptions, it is all very matter of fact and part of his condition and the female characters are treated abominably The author appears to have no opinion on this aspect of his character Maybe he is making a point, maybe there is a deeper meaning which I am missing Actually it is just unpleasant and pointless It is as though the victims mostly unamed and undescribed have no importance or significance they do not matter Moravagine is portrayed as the next stage in human evolution and is above normal considerations I ve heard that sort of superiority argument before Master Race.I know it is only a novel and I am not as a rule squeamish about what I read, but there is such a deep level of unpleasantness here, especially towards women that, for me there was just no point ot it Rant over. Moravagine is one huge masturbatory celebration, Cendrars personal exorcism into born again apogee I think Cendrars woke up one morning and he decided he d had enough of dichotomy, duality and double structure With one fell swoop of the literary sword, he cut himself in two, separating out the unacceptable face of humanity like so much egg white oozing away from the yolk, and infested invested Moragavine rankest of them all, thus allowing himself to phoenix whole, purged and as pure as a pair of newborn baby s buttocks This is a roman a clef Raymond, a young psychoanalyst, rescues the abominable in thought, and word, and deed, and indeed, physique Moragavine from an insane asylum, and the two of them go on a world wide rampage of anarchy and murder well Moragavine does, with Raymond mostly a spectator Their travels follow Cendrars personal life travails Russia, The United States and finally Paris In a clever twist towards the end, Raymond encounters Cendrars who has lost an arm in WWI and asks him to write up Moragavine s manuscripts I like it when authors pop up in their books for a tete a tete with their characters Oh, and Cendrars did lose his right arm in the Great War.Moragavine, then, is Raymond aka Cendrars doppelganger that ugly, nasty, evil, unPC part of ourselves we always have to keep in check, subdue, cut off at the collar Except Cendrars doesn t do that instead, he vests it all in Moragavine, and lets him rip, whilst following behind, and sucking it all in vicariously Moragavine means death by vagina Full throttle misogyny in hand, he disembowels women and children, embraces murder, anarchy and debauchery, feels empowered when he kills, laughs when the world cries, has no remorse but tons of energy for yet new and new escapade Trailing behind is Raymond a sexless, ennui ed, eunuch ed, disenchanted half shadow of Moragavine, enthralled and possessed by him.Because Cendrars ultimately sees life as boring and empty once all the sin and strife has been stripped out It doesn t ay to be too good Just as all sin and no Grace is equally unrewarding Neither character is whole Maybe we are meant to have a little of both. Blaise Cendrars is one of those characters that one can t believe that they actually exist His novel reads like a demented Sam Fuller film with a script by Luis Bunuel Well, that how it reads to me Nevertheless this early 20th Century classic is sort of the door that leads to the madness of that Century It s a feverish adventure tale that goes beyond reason into a form of madness And Cendrars was, this one arm manic, was one of the greats No doubt about that Courageous absurdity Audacious luster Unequivocal bloodlust Dragging existentialism across the muddied battlefields at the heart of man s inextinguishable conflagration, this book bestows the chattering of the primal inescapably intertwined with the human spirit Nihilism rants from the gutters of humanity speaking that inexcusable, uncomfortable unapologetic truth The mirror reflects a monstrosity but what else was there to view but man devouring its own flesh, shitting out ideals only to fertilize the destruction that lay ravaged heaping with steaming germination Yes they rebuilt the milieu but with raw inconsolable exteriors Blood barely drying This book unveils the animosity that harkens from our core as if the duality dominated our path of discovery Cendrars is almost a victim Moravagine is almost a hero The reader is most assuredly an accomplice The story begs the question, what is at the very base of man The traveling of the two characters makes for great conflict The adventures introduce many eccentric characters His descriptive style generates energy He invites you into the madness as an accomplice or as a hostage, you are not sure whether to have fun or fear for your life This book seems like it is meant for heathens perhaps this is why I enjoy it so much Certain halves of man irreconcilable Cendrars writes as if he is if to suffocate the reader in madness, the reader becomes a sadomasochist in the process, torturing the reader with its suppression of oxygen, almost on the point of death, until he releases your submerged head finally allows you to breathe oh the air is so sweet when escaping from such a dreary womb The tale has extreme contours, wild unforeseen twists of tone plot The variety is quite pleasing puts on full display the author s flexibility diverse tastes There is mention of the Idiot, but what of the devil, the butcher, the mystic, the subversive, the baron, the lecher, the committed The endless sides to the psyche of Moravagine make him an extraordinary character The contrast between the two main characters only adds to the robust flavor of this recalling This exotic flower singed by the bomb sullied by the whore s lipstick impaled by the sounds of political nonsense It pushes wisdom deep into the nether regions of your mind like a lobotomy incision Compels you to leave your comfort to venture into the very pulse of a supreme virility A potency exists, exclaims wails with fright sheer bliss The psychotic cackle of someone truly free from societies boundaries, from law, from conscience from judgment by god, beast or man truly resonates A freedom that extinguishes itself with a fury It brings to mind what society found vulgar then what is found vulgar now, what is deemed obscene It s an aborted fetus sprinkled with glitter Indeed whimsical carnage bedazzled with the jewels of elegant words A diamond covered in shit The book is littered with amazing quotes insight I especially appreciated reading about his hardships in writing finalizing the book It makes me feel less guilty about my hardships in the same manner The combination of all of this made it a very enjoyable read for me Cheers to the mad I couldn t decide whether to give this 3 stars or 4 stars not that anyone would care either way Cendrars seems to have hated this book, having begun it in 1917, he was still trying to finish it as he crossed the Equator on a boat to Rio in 1924 He simply couldn t stand the turgid, pretentious style to which he had committed himself I don t disagree It made him vomit, this book 3 stars, bah The problem may, of course, rather be that I don t understand Surrealism The extravagant expressions of a diseased or troubled or excessive mind it s all well and good But as imaginings they don t have much meaning and so after awhile, it s hard to tell one lunatic s ravings from another And tedium sets in But, of course, this is rather subjective so perhaps reading of it will cure me of my limitations.Cendrars loved this book He conceived of it while talking to a diminutive Jew in a bar on the Boul Mich in 1912 The Jew s name was Starckmann Moravigine then accompanied him, Cendrars, throughout his many travails for the next 10 years or The Jew admired Cendrars enormously he was devoted And when Cendrars joined the War, the Jew followed him Cendrars lost his right arm The Jew lost his life.Cendrars seems to have been a man of excesses and yet capable of guilt He knew everyone, but in his autobiography spoke mainly about all the nobodies he knew In his found documents , printed at the rear of this volume, he speaks about his deep friendship for Satie, dear Satie Here s how he sounds when he s not being turgid and pretentious Moravagine I ve tried several times to go back to it since giving it up in Nice Today, if it s back on the table, it s because Cocteau set things in motion again that s what I hear Cocteau brings it up with Edmond Jaloux Jaloux, who edits a collection of novels, mentions it to his publisher he writes to me I don t want to know about it I don t know Jean Cocteau and I don t want to hear about Jaloux So I m hunted down by Paul Laffitte, by young people who come to my house to discuss the standards of high literature What a joke, they ve never written a thing maybe never a read a thing but they re charming, well dressed, likable you d think they were Cocteau s young nephews and Jean, sprung from the loins of Catulle Mend s, is himself a great nephew of Proust s Finally the publisher sends his delegate, Brun, the director of the house Louis Brun, former surveillance photographer, delivers his pitch He goes about it informally He s on the level and above board in his business dealings, he says He asks my price I ask for a fat sum He knocks it down by a fifth We sign He calls me tu We part good friends We re thick as thieves Ahh He must have been quite a character and a charming rogue, Cendrars And I can see how Miller must have loved him and stole so much from him Definitely, 4 stars If you only read one book this year about a diminutive gimp who enjoys disemboweling women, make it this one It will at least save you the bother of having to find another one And there s certainly no book quite like Blaise Cendrars Moravagine, a tonally irregular, provocative artifact of the 1920s French avant garde But don t be scared off by the phrase French avant garde and its omens of obfuscation and aesthetic prickliness Moravagine is, without qualification, a very readable book Its style is mostly conventional, with a strong narrative momentum, but its substance suggests an author whose powers of concentration or fortitude were limited The novel starts out apparently as a discourse on madness and disease, delivered by an iconoclastic young psychiatrist, who decides to release the criminally aberrant Moravagine from his confinement and accompany him on various escapades, including a stint in Russian terrorism, a quest for mythic treasure in the American Southwest, a delirious ride down the , and an apprenticeship with a drunken inventor There s not much cohesion or balance to be found here, and to search for a point to all this is certainly to invite accusations of being a spoilsport, but all in all, Moravagine was enjoyable enough for a book about a diminutive gimp who enjoys disemboweling women And Blaise Cendrars has the rare good sense to know when enough is enough. What a book Moments that are as ferocious and incandescent as any I ve read Framed as an elaborate literary hoax the overlong preface to The Complete Works of Moravagine which are, zut alors , lost Stolen from their resting place in a French country cottage beside a steeple where they were kept in an attic under lock and key Pilfered by Nazis, ground into the muck by hobnailed boots Thankfully this slender tome was rescued conniving wink, sharp elbowed nudge Here s a passage that captures the delirium All is palpitating My prison disappears The walls are struck down, there is a beating of wings Life lifts me into the air like a gigantic vulture At this height the earth is rounded like a breast One can see through it s transparent crust the veins of the core with their scudding, red pulsations On another side the rivers run, blue like arterial blood, and in the billions upon billions of creatures are hatching Above, like dusky lungs, the oceans swell and fall in turn The two glaciers eyes are close together and roll slowly in their sockets Now see the double sphere of a forehead, the sudden crest of a nose, its flinty ledges, its steep walls I fly across Mont Dore, hoarier than the head of Charlemagne, and land on the rim of the ear which yawns like a lunar crater This is my eyrie My hunting ground In these moments, it comes across as a treatise, or a sui generis example, of synaesthesia, an unfolding and infolding of sense experience , example of the brains aptitude for to transmuting base materials into viciously hard gems,the arational absorption of phenomena reverse engineering stars from heaps of dung The paratextual quote by Remy De Gourmont speaks to this this nothing, contains everything Universe in a grain of sand At other moments it s a bare knuckle rusty shiv critique of modern culture The finest flowers of civilization The purest constructions of thought The most generous and altruistic passions of the heart The most heroic gestures of man War Now and a thousand years ago If you want to live, kill Kill so that you can be free, or eat, or shit The shameful thing is to kill in masses, at a predetermined hour on a predetermined day, in honour of certain principles, under cover of a flag, with old men nodding approval, to kill in a disinterested or passive way stand alone against them all, young man, kill, kill, you are unique, you re the only man alive, kill until the others cut you short with the guillotine or the cord or the rope, with or without ceremony, in the name of the Community or the King Full stop.