Cover image for Fado Alexandrino
Title:
Fado Alexandrino
Author:
Antunes, António Lobo, 1942-
Uniform Title:
Fado Alexandrino. English
Edition:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York, N.Y. : Grove Weidenfeld, 1990.
Physical Description:
497 pages ; 25 cm
General Note:
Translation of: Fado Alexandrino.
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781555843434

9780802112996
Format :
Book

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Summary

Author Notes

Lobo Antunes, a psychiatrist and a soldier in the Portuguese colonial wars in Angola, was born in Lisbon. "South of Nowhere", his second novel, published in 1980, became the center of controversy both because of its daring content and its novel structure. The action is very brief: it lasts only one night. The author tells a silent woman companion his frank impressions about his experience as a medical doctor in the war of liberation against Portuguese colonialism. In some passages, the novel makes allusion to The Lusiads and its allegorical intentions. It denounces with lucid sarcasm the failure of Portuguese colonization in Africa.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Lobo Antunes, a psychiatrist and a soldier in the Portuguese colonial wars in Angola, was born in Lisbon. "South of Nowhere", his second novel, published in 1980, became the center of controversy both because of its daring content and its novel structure. The action is very brief: it lasts only one night. The author tells a silent woman companion his frank impressions about his experience as a medical doctor in the war of liberation against Portuguese colonialism. In some passages, the novel makes allusion to The Lusiads and its allegorical intentions. It denounces with lucid sarcasm the failure of Portuguese colonization in Africa.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 6

Publisher's Weekly Review

The Portuguese author of Elephant Memory and South of Nowhere makes no concessions to the reader in this dense and demanding work. Hundreds of pages elapse before settings, characters and events are explicitly identified; instead, the narrative progresses with Antunes recreating the thought processes of his four protagonists, who meet in their native Lisbon approximately 10 years after they have served a tour of duty in colonial Mozambique in 1970. The men reflect on their experiences there, on a subsequent revolution at home and on their personal histories as they spend a night in the company of five prostitutes--a night of revelations that ends in murder. Although Antunes, a practicing psychoanalyst, displays brilliance in the fluidity of his stream-of-consciousness and the complexity of his imagery (a stranger stares ``with the distant distraction of corpses at wakes, their smiles softened into the amiable indifference of portraiture''), the elusiveness of the plot will frustrate and bewilder most readers. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Library Journal Review

Between 1960 and 1974 tiny but once mighty Portugal sent a million and a half troops to preserve its empire in Angola, where men--scapegoats for the politicians back home--became machine gun-clutching animals in Vietnam-like conditions. Ten years after the coup to overthrow the Portuguese dictatorship and the withdrawal of troops from the African country, four ex-soldiers gather over dinner and wine to confess to one another their respective brutalities, which naturally lead to their present-day brutalities at home. Like the author's highly acclaimed autobiographical novel South from Nowhere ( LJ 5/15/83), in which an Army surgeon relives his 1,001 days in the Angolan hell, this longer and more particularized novel unfolds on many levels, and its quadruple confession leaves no doubt about the decadence and corruption of contemporary Lisbon. Recommended.-- Jack Shreve, Allegany Community Coll. , Cumberland, Md. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Choice Review

This novel, which is the Portuguese writer's eighth, is a powerful work of epic proportions that reconstructs the story of revolution in Europe in the 1970s. The fall of the Salazar dictatorship is simply a point of reference for the drama of transition of Portuguese society and culture from its colonial background (focused in the wars in Angola and Mozambique that provided the catalyst for change, comparable in their national consequences to the US experience in Vietnam) to the unchartered transition to a democracy for which Portugal had not the slightest preparation. The humanistic, cultural context of Antunes's exposition is confirmed by his use of dialogue in the form of reminiscences by four ex-soldiers in Lisbon during a tenth reunion of their battalion from Mozambique. Recounting a wide range of personal, social, and political experiences from before, during, and after "The Revolution," Antunes through narrators often employs an indirect free style, where vivid memories of battle in Mozambique are interspersed with images of life in Lisbon, which is skeptically viewed as an inconsequential tragicomedy. The writing contains a kaleidoscope of images in intense juxtaposition, shifting constantly in time and space. The humor and sense of the absurd applied both to the inept Maoist guerillas and to the Armed Forces factions constitutes only part of the novel that is a microcosm of modern Portugal. Appropriate for college, university, and public libraries. -K. D. Jackson, University of Texas at Austin


Publisher's Weekly Review

The Portuguese author of Elephant Memory and South of Nowhere makes no concessions to the reader in this dense and demanding work. Hundreds of pages elapse before settings, characters and events are explicitly identified; instead, the narrative progresses with Antunes recreating the thought processes of his four protagonists, who meet in their native Lisbon approximately 10 years after they have served a tour of duty in colonial Mozambique in 1970. The men reflect on their experiences there, on a subsequent revolution at home and on their personal histories as they spend a night in the company of five prostitutes--a night of revelations that ends in murder. Although Antunes, a practicing psychoanalyst, displays brilliance in the fluidity of his stream-of-consciousness and the complexity of his imagery (a stranger stares ``with the distant distraction of corpses at wakes, their smiles softened into the amiable indifference of portraiture''), the elusiveness of the plot will frustrate and bewilder most readers. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Library Journal Review

Between 1960 and 1974 tiny but once mighty Portugal sent a million and a half troops to preserve its empire in Angola, where men--scapegoats for the politicians back home--became machine gun-clutching animals in Vietnam-like conditions. Ten years after the coup to overthrow the Portuguese dictatorship and the withdrawal of troops from the African country, four ex-soldiers gather over dinner and wine to confess to one another their respective brutalities, which naturally lead to their present-day brutalities at home. Like the author's highly acclaimed autobiographical novel South from Nowhere ( LJ 5/15/83), in which an Army surgeon relives his 1,001 days in the Angolan hell, this longer and more particularized novel unfolds on many levels, and its quadruple confession leaves no doubt about the decadence and corruption of contemporary Lisbon. Recommended.-- Jack Shreve, Allegany Community Coll. , Cumberland, Md. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Choice Review

This novel, which is the Portuguese writer's eighth, is a powerful work of epic proportions that reconstructs the story of revolution in Europe in the 1970s. The fall of the Salazar dictatorship is simply a point of reference for the drama of transition of Portuguese society and culture from its colonial background (focused in the wars in Angola and Mozambique that provided the catalyst for change, comparable in their national consequences to the US experience in Vietnam) to the unchartered transition to a democracy for which Portugal had not the slightest preparation. The humanistic, cultural context of Antunes's exposition is confirmed by his use of dialogue in the form of reminiscences by four ex-soldiers in Lisbon during a tenth reunion of their battalion from Mozambique. Recounting a wide range of personal, social, and political experiences from before, during, and after "The Revolution," Antunes through narrators often employs an indirect free style, where vivid memories of battle in Mozambique are interspersed with images of life in Lisbon, which is skeptically viewed as an inconsequential tragicomedy. The writing contains a kaleidoscope of images in intense juxtaposition, shifting constantly in time and space. The humor and sense of the absurd applied both to the inept Maoist guerillas and to the Armed Forces factions constitutes only part of the novel that is a microcosm of modern Portugal. Appropriate for college, university, and public libraries. -K. D. Jackson, University of Texas at Austin


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