Advertisement
 
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollectionsJ M Coetzee
IN THE NEWS

J M Coetzee

MORE STORIES ABOUT:
FEATURED ARTICLES
BOOKS
February 22, 1987 | Richard Eder
This graceful and troubling variation on Robinson Crusoe is partly a riddle and partly a set of meditations on art and reality. Going beyond its puzzles and reflections, though, it is the story of a haunting character trying to wake up from the fictional dream she is caught in. J. M. Coetzee is from South Africa, where alienation is not a choice but a necessity; and as such, instills a transcendent vitality in its highly crafted distortions.
ARTICLES BY DATE
ENTERTAINMENT
September 5, 2013 | By David L. Ulin, Los Angeles Times Book Critic
I don't read J.M. Coetzee for pleasure. To be fair, I'm not sure anyone does. The 2003 Nobel laureate writes from his head more than his heart, framing novels that are philosophical and austere, books that break down the world in highly rational ways. Over the course of his career, he's been compared to Beckett and Kafka, although despite the occasional nod in their direction - the title character of his 1983 novel "The Life and Times of Michael K. " functions to some extent as an homage to "The Trial's" Josef K. - he lacks their appreciation of humor, of life as essentially absurd.
Advertisement
ENTERTAINMENT
October 4, 2003 | Robert McCrum, Special to The Times
There had been rumors that this year's Nobel Prize for literature would go to a North or South American, to Philip Roth or Mario Vargas Llosa but, as usual, the Swedish Academy confounded commentators, as it likes to do. For once, the unexpected choice is also a very good one. J.M. Coetzee is the first South African to win the prize since Nadine Gordimer in 1991. That, in a sense, is all you need to know. Coetzee is the novelist of the new South Africa.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 27, 2009 | By Richard Eder
Summertime J.M. Coetzee Viking: 266 pp., $26.50 Fortunately "The Tempest" has no sixth act. What could Shakespeare have made out of Prospero after he broke his wand and renounced his magic? Just another pensioner with nothing to do but hang around, rehash old miracles, talk about himself. J.M. Coetzee, after a string of severe, demanding, sometimes parched, often-brilliant novels, has been turning inward. Two years ago, the journey led to "Diary of a Bad Year," whose central character, C., is barely even the writer's alter ego (strike the "alter")
WORLD
October 3, 2003 | Ann M. Simmons, Times Staff Writer
South African writer J.M. Coetzee, a master at highlighting the anguish in his racially divided home country, Thursday won the 2003 Nobel Prize in literature for novels "characterized by their well-crafted composition, pregnant dialogue and analytical brilliance." The 217-year-old Swedish Academy, which awards the prize, described Coetzee, 63, as a "scrupulous doubter, ruthless in his criticism of the cruel rationalism and cosmetic morality of Western civilization."
ENTERTAINMENT
December 27, 2009 | By Richard Eder
Summertime J.M. Coetzee Viking: 266 pp., $26.50 Fortunately "The Tempest" has no sixth act. What could Shakespeare have made out of Prospero after he broke his wand and renounced his magic? Just another pensioner with nothing to do but hang around, rehash old miracles, talk about himself. J.M. Coetzee, after a string of severe, demanding, sometimes parched, often-brilliant novels, has been turning inward. Two years ago, the journey led to "Diary of a Bad Year," whose central character, C., is barely even the writer's alter ego (strike the "alter")
ENTERTAINMENT
September 5, 2013 | By David L. Ulin, Los Angeles Times Book Critic
I don't read J.M. Coetzee for pleasure. To be fair, I'm not sure anyone does. The 2003 Nobel laureate writes from his head more than his heart, framing novels that are philosophical and austere, books that break down the world in highly rational ways. Over the course of his career, he's been compared to Beckett and Kafka, although despite the occasional nod in their direction - the title character of his 1983 novel "The Life and Times of Michael K. " functions to some extent as an homage to "The Trial's" Josef K. - he lacks their appreciation of humor, of life as essentially absurd.
BOOKS
December 12, 1999 | JONATHAN LEVI
"Morals have bedded with story-telling since the magic of the imaginative capacity developed in the human brain." So wrote South Africa's Nadine Gordimer in 1988, one year before the end of apartheid, three years before her acceptance of the Nobel Prize for literature. Politics, on the other hand, "somehow followed morals in, picking the lock and immobilizing the alarm system."
BOOKS
December 30, 2007 | Art Winslow, Art Winslow, a former literary editor and executive editor of the Nation magazine, writes frequently about books and culture.
He was never waiting for the barbarians. Even in the novel bearing that name, published in Great Britain in 1980, the South African writer and now Nobel laureate J.M. Coetzee situated them in our midst. They were not the proclaimed threat on the periphery of the unnamed Empire of his allegory, but agents of the state itself, which had declared emergency powers and taken to seizing and torturing prisoners.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 24, 2005 | Natasha S. Randall, Special to The Times
THE first moments of J.M. Coetzee's new novel describe a cyclist being struck hard by a car. Paul Rayment's crushed leg is amputated hours later. When he awakes in the hospital after the operation, he signs forms and in the blank space next to the word "family," he writes "none." Paul refuses a prosthesis and tells the doctors that he prefers to care for himself. Despite his reluctance to accept professional care, they engage a private nurse to help him at home.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 25, 2009 | Gary Goldstein
Director Steve Jacobs and his screenwriter wife Anna-Maria Monticelli's respectful -- and respectable -- adaptation of J.M. Coetzee's Booker Prize-winning 1999 novel, "Disgrace," proves a double-edged sword. Although the pair has obviously taken pains to stay true to the author's structure, tone and purpose, their fidelity results in a film that's absorbing but often bloodless and, frankly, depressing. There's no arguing, however, that Jacobs and Monticelli have approached their challenging source material with a clear and committed cinematic vision.
BOOKS
December 30, 2007 | Art Winslow, Art Winslow, a former literary editor and executive editor of the Nation magazine, writes frequently about books and culture.
He was never waiting for the barbarians. Even in the novel bearing that name, published in Great Britain in 1980, the South African writer and now Nobel laureate J.M. Coetzee situated them in our midst. They were not the proclaimed threat on the periphery of the unnamed Empire of his allegory, but agents of the state itself, which had declared emergency powers and taken to seizing and torturing prisoners.
BOOKS
July 15, 2007 | James Marcus, James Marcus is the author of "Amazonia: Five Years at the Epicenter of the Dot.Com Juggernaut" and the proprietor of a blog, House of Mirth.
WHEN J.M. Coetzee received the Nobel Prize in 2003, the citation from the Swedish Academy dwelt primarily on his career as a novelist. That made perfect sense. Although the author had produced a large body of memoir, criticism and polemical prose, it was his pitiless fiction that made the biggest impact, from the quasi-allegory of "Waiting for the Barbarians" to the serial traumas of "Disgrace." These are major books, despite their slender heft and endless modulations of disgust.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 24, 2005 | Natasha S. Randall, Special to The Times
THE first moments of J.M. Coetzee's new novel describe a cyclist being struck hard by a car. Paul Rayment's crushed leg is amputated hours later. When he awakes in the hospital after the operation, he signs forms and in the blank space next to the word "family," he writes "none." Paul refuses a prosthesis and tells the doctors that he prefers to care for himself. Despite his reluctance to accept professional care, they engage a private nurse to help him at home.
BOOKS
November 2, 2003 | John Bayley, John Bayley, a professor emeritus of English literature at Oxford University's St. Catherine's College, is the author of numerous works, including "Leo Tolstoy," "The Red Hat: A Novel" and "Elegy for Iris," about his late wife, Iris Murdoch.
Elizabeth COSTELLO is a quite famous Australian novelist -- her best known work is a feminist reinterpretation of James Joyce's Mrs. Bloom -- now getting on in life and more accustomed to traveling, lecturing and receiving prizes than to writing new novels. She is about to visit America, escorted by her son, to pick up quite a grand award, given by Altona College.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 4, 2003 | Robert McCrum, Special to The Times
There had been rumors that this year's Nobel Prize for literature would go to a North or South American, to Philip Roth or Mario Vargas Llosa but, as usual, the Swedish Academy confounded commentators, as it likes to do. For once, the unexpected choice is also a very good one. J.M. Coetzee is the first South African to win the prize since Nadine Gordimer in 1991. That, in a sense, is all you need to know. Coetzee is the novelist of the new South Africa.
BOOKS
August 25, 2002 | LEE SIEGEL, Lee Siegel is a contributing writer to Book Review and the recipient of the 2002 National Magazine Award for reviews and criticism.
Are J.M. Coetzee and V.S. Naipaul the same person? More likely they drink from the same inspirational well, like two men on a desert island sharing a canteen. "Youth: Scenes From Provincial Life II," the second volume of the South African Coetzee's fictionalized autobiography, and Naipaul's "Half a Life," the Nobel laureate's far more fictionalized but equally autobiographical novella (published in the fall), might well have been created by a single sensibility.
BOOKS
July 15, 2007 | James Marcus, James Marcus is the author of "Amazonia: Five Years at the Epicenter of the Dot.Com Juggernaut" and the proprietor of a blog, House of Mirth.
WHEN J.M. Coetzee received the Nobel Prize in 2003, the citation from the Swedish Academy dwelt primarily on his career as a novelist. That made perfect sense. Although the author had produced a large body of memoir, criticism and polemical prose, it was his pitiless fiction that made the biggest impact, from the quasi-allegory of "Waiting for the Barbarians" to the serial traumas of "Disgrace." These are major books, despite their slender heft and endless modulations of disgust.
WORLD
October 3, 2003 | Ann M. Simmons, Times Staff Writer
South African writer J.M. Coetzee, a master at highlighting the anguish in his racially divided home country, Thursday won the 2003 Nobel Prize in literature for novels "characterized by their well-crafted composition, pregnant dialogue and analytical brilliance." The 217-year-old Swedish Academy, which awards the prize, described Coetzee, 63, as a "scrupulous doubter, ruthless in his criticism of the cruel rationalism and cosmetic morality of Western civilization."
BOOKS
August 25, 2002 | LEE SIEGEL, Lee Siegel is a contributing writer to Book Review and the recipient of the 2002 National Magazine Award for reviews and criticism.
Are J.M. Coetzee and V.S. Naipaul the same person? More likely they drink from the same inspirational well, like two men on a desert island sharing a canteen. "Youth: Scenes From Provincial Life II," the second volume of the South African Coetzee's fictionalized autobiography, and Naipaul's "Half a Life," the Nobel laureate's far more fictionalized but equally autobiographical novella (published in the fall), might well have been created by a single sensibility.
Los Angeles Times Articles
|