The World Goes On

The World Goes On
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The World Goes On is a collection of short stories in which the narrator first speaks in the first person singular and then proceeds with eleven stories spoken by different protagonists and finally bids farewell (“for here I would leave this earth and these stars, because I would take nothing with me”). As László Krasznahoraki himself explains, “Each text is about drawing our attention away from this world, speeding our body toward annihilation, and immersing ourselves in a current of thought or a narrative.”

The protagonists of the books are as intriguing as possible: a Hungarian interpreter obsessed with waterfalls wanders the chaotic streets of Shanghai overlooking the abyss in his own mind; a traveler, reeling from the sights and sounds of Varanasi, encounters a giant on the banks of the Ganges ranting about the nature of a single drop of water; a child laborer in a Portuguese marble quarry wanders off from work one day into a surreal realm utterly alien from his daily toils. The World Goes On is yet another amazing masterpiece by the winner of the 2015 Man Booker International Prize. “The excitement of his writing,” Adam Thirwell proclaimed in the New York Review of Books, “is that he has come up with his own original forms—there is nothing else like it in contemporary literature.”

László Krasznahorkai was born in Gyula, Hungary, in 1954. Several of his works, notably his novels Sátántangó, 1985 and Az ellenállás melankóliája, 1989, have been turned into feature films by Hungarian director Béla Tarr. He wrote eight novels and many short stories and novellas. He was awarded the Man Booker International Prize (2015) and the National Book Award for Translated Literature.

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