Man in the Holocene
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A stunning tour de force, Man in the Holocene constructs a powerful vision of our place in the world by combining the banality of an aging man’s lonely inner life and the objective facts he finds in the books of his isolated home. As a rainstorm rages outside, Max Frisch’s protagonist, Geiser, watches the mountain landscape crumble beneath landslides and flooding, and speculates that the town will be wiped out by the collapse of a section of the mountain. Seeking refuge from the storm in town, he makes his way through a difficult and dangerous mountain pass, only to abandon his original plan and return home.
A compelling meditation by one of Frisch’s most original characters, Man in the Holocene charts Geiser’s desperate attempt to find his place in history and in the confusing and fragile world outside his window.
length of more than 1 meter. Whether the spotted or alpine salamanders of today can be regarded as the successors of dinosaurs or as an early form of them is not clear from the encyclopedia. 62 *5AURI6CHIA! GREEK' 6AUR05 - LfZARD DW05AUR5 ** GREEK- DEIAJ05 - TERRIBLE Since the scissors, the usual ones, broke, Geiser has been using nail scissors, and after the thumbtacks have been used up, there is still a whole reel of tape, Magic Tape, which sticks on wall plaster. THE ERA OF THE DINOSAURS
could not wade it in knee-high boots— this has cost him a lot of time, since Geiser is wearing ordinary walking shoes. H alf an hour at least. He walked up the slope and then down it, looking for stones he could trust, stones as large as possible, which would not tip or roll over when he set foot on them, and close enough for him to step across. But it was more or less the same everywhere. In the end there was nothing left but to risk it. One of the stones in which, after lengthy examination, he
thighs. W hen will he reach the second gully, the large one? There are stretches Geiser cannot remember; all the same, there they are, fairly steep, and now and again, in order to surmount a high step, Geiser has to provide help for his thighs by putting a supporting hand, the right one, on a knee; the left hand is holding the umbrella as a walking stick. With increasing frequency Geiser finds it necessary to sit down on the nearest bank to regain his breath, both hands grasping the handle of his
helicopters can be brought in, unless there is fog. Nobody in the village thinks that the day, or perhaps the night, will come when the whole mountain could be gin to slide, burying the village for all time. Somewhere a tapping on metal. It is midnight, but still no pagoda. It started on the Thursday of the previous week, when it was still possible to sit out in the open; the weather was sultry, as always before a thunderstorm, the gnats biting through one’s socks; no summer lightning, it just
few people at the tables are saying is nothing new. A bad year for wine; even for mushrooms the sum mer has been too wet. Nobody is reckoning on another Flood. T he local youngsters, prevented from driving to work in the valley, are obviously set to spend all day working the noisy soccer machine. A second schnapps, courtesy of the landlord, takes up little more of the after noon. T h e youngsters are loud in their enjoyment; the erosion going on outside does not worry them in the least. 31