The Ministry of Pain

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Harper Collins, Feb 21, 2006 - Fiction - 257 pages
1 Review

The Ministry of Pain tells the story of Tanja Lucic, an exile from Yugoslavia and a lecturer in Serbo-Croatian literature at the University of Amsterdam. Her class is filled with other Yugoslav exiles, not much younger than she, who have found temporary refuge in the Department of Slavonic Languages. Rather than teach literature, Tanja prods the students to reconstruct their pasts by writing essays that indulge their "Yugonostalgia" and their memories of Yugoslavia's culture and disintegration in war. Meanwhile, Tanja and her student Igor form a dangerously close relationship that threatens to unleash all the tensions of life in exile. With her sharp and melancholy observations, Dubravka Ugresic illuminates with savage compassion our shared human homelessness.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - kant1066 - LibraryThing

From Mishima's "The Sailor Who Fell from Grace with the Sea" to Kafka to "Winesburg, Ohio," the themes of alienation and exile have pervaded world literature in the twentieth century so much as to ... Read full review

THE MINISTRY OF PAIN

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A Croatian intellectual's flight to the Netherlands from the ruins of Yugoslavia yields striking vignettes of emotional shellshock, linguistic displacement and limbo-like stasis.Tanja Lucic arrives ... Read full review

Contents

Section 1
3
Section 2
9
Section 3
14
Section 4
21
Section 5
26
Section 6
33
Section 7
42
Section 8
47
Section 17
131
Section 18
139
Section 19
144
Section 20
154
Section 21
164
Section 22
172
Section 23
176
Section 24
186

Section 9
57
Section 10
76
Section 11
82
Section 12
95
Section 13
104
Section 14
110
Section 15
115
Section 16
125
Section 25
192
Section 26
199
Section 27
213
Section 28
219
Section 29
225
Section 30
230
Section 31
240
Copyright

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About the author (2006)

An acclaimed novelist and essayist, Dubravka Ugresic is a native of the former Yugoslavia who left her homeland in 1993 for political reasons. She now lives in Amsterdam.

Michael Henry Heim was born in New York on January 21, 1943. He received an undergraduate degree from Columbia University and a doctorate in Slavic languages from Harvard University. He was fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian, Russian and Serbian/Croatian and possessed a reading knowledge of six more languages. He became a professor of Slavic languages at the University California at Los Angeles in 1972 and served as chairman of the Slavic languages department from 1999 to 2003. He was known for his translations of works by Gunter Grass, Milan Kundera, Thomas Mann and Anton Chekhov. He received numerous awards for his work including the Helen and Kurt Wolff Translator's Prize in 2005, the PEN/Ralph Manheim Medal for Translation in 2009, and the PEN Translation Prize in 2010. He died from complications of melanoma on September 29, 2012 at the age of 69.

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