By Alasdair Gray
An unforgettably not easy booklet approximately energy and powerlessness, women and men, masters and servants, small nations and large nations, Alasdair Gray's exploration of the politics of pornography has misplaced none of its energy to surprise. this can be a searing portrait of male desire and inadequacy, as explored through the lonely sexual fantasies of Jock McLeish, failed husband, lover, and businessman.Yet there's desire the following, and the humor—if black—and the imaginitive and textual strength of the narrative achieves its personal form of redemption in any case.
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Additional info for 1982, Janine
Every inch of wall is of exposed uniform brickwork. There are quite a few people inside. The congregation, if one may call it that, is organized around a variety of social services and activities. Next to the seltzer fountain someone distributes lebkuchen, another puts out bins with secondhand clothing, a third picks up litter. At first my two women seem to take little note of this bustle, alarmed as they are by the absence of an altar. I point out a massive analogue clock on the front wall, where one 58 would normally find the pipe organ.
On my way out, I took a detour through the audiovisual section to retrieve a film I had been meaning to see again. You make your way through the dusky hall towards the counter. Awaiting your turn, you survey the partitioned interior, the aura of television screens now in use. You are assigned a screening booth, which drastically narrows your field of view. The soundproofing seals off your auditory canals until you plug in the headset handed to you and turn on one of the media players. You await sound; sound is the cue to direct your sight to the monitor and screen out the remainder of your environment.
But Hitler was just the tip of the iceberg (we reason), in which the other perpetrators were voluntarily or involuntarily entrapped. Here we break down: what an inhuman disaster, unnatural, inhuman catastrophe, what animals, animals—and what a soothing mantra it is. But the disaster’s actual return remains inconceivable to us. The monsters have fallen under the rubble. So our guard is not held high enough. We would rather not look past the horizon of history, nor dig through the piles (and pits) of historical debris, sorted and unsorted documents, partial and impartial memories; we would rather not move beyond these obstructions.
1982, Janine by Alasdair Gray