The White Hotel

The White Hotel

Book - 1993
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It is a dream of electrifying eroticism and inexplicable violence, recounted by a young woman to her analyst, Sigmund Freud. It is a horrifying yet restrained narrative of the Holocaust. It is a searing vision of the wounds of the twentieth century, and an attempt to heal them. Interweaving poetry and case history, fantasy and historical truth-telling, The White Hotel is a modern classic of enduring emotional power that attempts nothing less than to reconcile the notion of individual destiny with that of historical fate.
Publisher: New York : Penguin Books, 1993, c1981
ISBN: 9780140231731
Branch Call Number: THOMA
Characteristics: x, 274 p. ; 20 cm


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Nov 26, 2015

A very peculiar book. It almost seems as if Thomas undertook to white two entirely unrelated books and somewhere along the line got the two of them tangled together into one manuscript. Much of it is taken up with several different accounts of the troubled dreams, sexual fantasies and psychosomatic illnesses of a young woman under the treatment of a fictionalized Sigmund Freud. But along the way it morphs into an account of a notorious Nazi-era massacre in Ukraine.
D. M. Thomas is clearly an extremely skilled writer on several levels, combining prose, poetry and psychological story telling. But how many different versions of one person's hallucinations are really necessary, no matter how imaginatively crafted? In the end, I personally find psychoanalysis to be a dreary and tiresome topic for the same reason that I decry so-called "reality" TV.
A book highly praised by many who apparently see merit in it that I just don't perceive.

Nov 08, 2010

This was really interesting...violently graphic in places, touching and moving in others. It was neat how, while at times it seemed like very separate stories, it all came together in the end, in a way that worked.

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