Cover image for Darkness at Noon
Title:
Darkness at Noon
Author:
Koestler, Arthur, 1905-1983.
Edition:
Bantam Modern Classic edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Bantam, 1968.
Physical Description:
216 pages ; 18 cm
General Note:
Originally published: New York : Macmillan, 1941.
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780553265958

9780738307091
Format :
Book

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Kenmore Library X Adult Mass Market Paperback Open Shelf
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Summary

Summary

Darkness At Noonstands as an unequaled fictional portrayal of the nightmare politics of our time. Its hero is an aging revolutionary, imprisoned and psychologically tortured by the Party to which he has dedicated his life. As the pressure to confess preposterous crimes increases, he re-lives a career that embodies the terrible ironies and human betrayals of a totalitarian movement masking itself as an instrument of deliverance. Almost unbearably vivid in its depiction of one man's solitary agony,Darkness At Noonasks questions about ends and means that have relevance not only for the past but for the perilous present. It is--as theTimes Literary Supplementhas declared--"A remarkable book, a grimly fascinating interpretation of the logic of the Russian Revolution, indeed of all revolutionary dictatorships, and at the same time a tense and subtly intellectualized drama..."


Author Notes

Arthur Koestler was born on September 5, 1905 in Budapest, Hungary and studied at the University of Vienna.

Koestler was a Middle East correspondent for several German newspapers, wrote for the Manchester Guardian, the London Times and the New York Herald Tribune.

Koestler wrote Darkness at Noon, which centers on the destructiveness of politics, The Act of Creation, a book about creativity, and The Ghost in the Machine, which bravely attacks behaviorism.

Arthur Koestler died in London on March 3, 1983.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Excerpts

Excerpts

The First Hearing Nobody can rule guiltlessly.-- Saint-Just Chapter One The cell door slammed behind Rubashov. He remained leaning against the door for a few seconds, and lit a cigarette. On the bed to his right lay two fairly clean blankets, and the straw mattress looked newly filled. The wash-basin to his left had no plug, but the tap functioned. The can next to it had been freshly disinfected, it did not smell. The walls on both sides were of solid brick, which would stifle the sound of tapping, but where the heating and drain pipe penetrated it, it had been plastered and resounded quite well; besides, the heating pipe itself seemed to be noise-conducting. The window started at eye level; one could see down into the courtyard without having to pull oneself up by the bars. So far everything was in order. He yawned, took off his coat, rolled it up and put it on the mattress as a pillow. He looked out into the yard. The snow shimmered yellow in the double light of the moon and the electric lanterns. All round the yard, along the walls, a narrow track had been cleared for the daily exercise. Dawn had not yet appeared; the stars still shone clear and frostily, in spite of the lanterns. On the rampart of the outside wall, which lay opposite Rubashov's cell, a soldier with slanted rifle was marching the hundred steps up and down; he stamped at every step as if on parade. From time to time the yellow light of the lanterns flashed on his bayonet. Rubashov took his shoes off, still standing at the window. He put out his cigarette, laid the stump on the floor at the end of his bedstead, and remained sitting on the mattress for a few minutes. He went back to the window once more. The courtyard was still; the sentry was just turning; above the machine-gun tower he saw a streak of the Milky Way. Rubashov stretched himself on the bunk and wrapped himself in the top blanket. It was five o'clock and it was unlikely that one had to get up here before seven in the winter. He was very sleepy and, thinking it over, decided that he would hardly be brought up for examination for another three or four days. He took his pince-nez off, laid it on the stone-paved floor next to the cigarette stump, smiled and shut his eyes. He was warmly wrapped up in the blanket, and felt protected; for the first time in months he was not afraid of his dreams. When a few minutes later the warder tuned the light off from outside, and looked through the spy-hole into his cell, Rubashov, ex-Commissar of the People, slept, his back turned to the wall, with his head on his outstretched left arm, which stuck stiffly out of the bed; only the hand on the end of it hung loosely and twitched in his sleep. Copyright (c) 1941 by The Macmillan Company Copyright renewed (c) 1968 by Mrs. F. H. K. Henries (Daphne Hardy) Excerpted from Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

The First Hearing
The Second Hearing
The Third Hearing
The Grammatical Fiction

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