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Description

A city is hit by a sudden and strange epidemic of "white blindness", which spares no one. Authorities confine the blind to an empty mental hospital, but there social conventions quickly crumble and the struggle for survival brings out the worst in people.

There is one eyewitness to this nightmare who guides seven strangers -among them a boy with no mother, a girl with dark glasses, a dog of tears - out of their prison and through the barren streets, and the procession becomes as uncanny as the surroundings are harrowing.

A magnificent parable of loss and disorientation and a vivid evocation of the horrors of the 20th century, by Nobel Prize-winning author Jose Saramago, Blindness has swept the masses with its powerful portrayal of man's worst appetites and weaknesses - and man's ultimately exhilarating spirit.

English translation by Juan Sager.

©1997 Juan Sager (English translation); 1995 Jose Saramago and Editorial Caminho (P)2008 BBC Audiobooks America

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Notations

Global

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Histoire

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Il n'y a pas encore de critique disponible pour ce titre.
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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Cora Judd
  • 27/08/2008

Dark

This is a very different kind of doomsday fiction. The writing and reading of "Blindness" are vivid enough that I'm still a bit haunted by it several weeks after finishing.

The storytelling is very like Gabriel Garcia Marquez; disparate events are woven into a well told tale. While a Latino ken for life-metaphors is apparent, "Blindness" could be any time or place.

I heartily recommend it, but be prepared to "see" things differently.

24 sur 26 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Richard Pesavento
  • 04/10/2008

Surrealistic

Saramago is a Nobel laureate, so I think we have to credit him with having insight worthy of our attention. Blindness is a powerful parable, but I think it has to be read as a surrealistic allegory rather than any attempt to portray the situation as it might actually occur in the real world. I agree with the reviewer that pointed out that this parable is much more accessible in the oral than in the visual format. The endless run-on sentences and lack of proper names makes the reading hard to follow, but as a narrative, it isnt so bad. Maybe this was the intention of Saramago. In the story he has the blind listening to readings from the only sighted individual as their only source of entertainment, and he may have intended this as a more powerful verbal parable that a written one. I am an ophthalmologist myself, I found this story to be an intriguing thought experiment, but I was waylaid by the fact that the author made no attempt, or possibly consciously avoided the attempt, to make the story scientifically plausible. There are so many incongruous elements in time and space, its like a Dali painting. For instance he talks about the doctors wife being distraught about not winding her watch. The last time I had to wind my watch was probably in the 1960s, and then he talks later about computers functioning the water system. The ophthalmologist talks about ordering an encephalogram , which we havent used since the 1970s, instead of a CT scan or MRI. He also talks about how the blind stop gesticulation when they talk. But people with acquired blindness have their gesticulations programmed into their extrapyramidal system and never loose that habit. Did he intentionally ignore present day science so as to make the story more surrealistic, or is he a lazy Nobel laureate researcher?
I thought it was a provocative read, intriguing and thought provoking. But dont expect Crichton. Think Lord of the Flies by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

26 sur 30 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
  • W Perry Hall
  • 25/08/2015

Stark Portrait of Blindness as Contagious Disease

The famous Portuguese author Jose Saramago paints a cold and halting portrait of what it would be like were Blindness suddenly contagious.

To prevent a pandemic, the government quarantines the first stricken, including the Doctor (an optometrist) and the Doctor's wife, the latter of whom is obviously immune to the disease. As the story progresses, the gov't puts more and more blind people into the abandoned building, with little food and zero supervision, forcing them all to fend for themselves. To add to the icy subtext, Saramago gives all the characters only descriptors, like the Doc, the Doctor's Wife, the Girl with Dark Glasses, the Cab Driver, etc.

This is a tale of both the goodness and baseness of humans in a world of darkness and squalor. Evil and the treachery of men initially wins, but goodness eventually prevails, so that this novel is ultimately hopeful.

The potential reader should be forewarned that this book contains graphic scenes of the rapes of several women.

As usual, the narrator Jonathan Davis is excellent.



7 sur 8 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Carol B.
  • 12/09/2008

One of the best books I've ever "read"

This book is being made into a movie and the trailer intrigued me. The book was not available on Audible yet, so I went to the book store and purchased the text version.

I could not read it. The author is known for his long sentences and paragraphs. Wikipedia warned me that the author does not give any of the characters names. It was too difficult to read the text. I wondered how in the world did this author ever win the Pulitzer Prize for literature.

Then, I saw the Audible version was available. I listened to a sample. The narrator made up for the author's idiosyncrasies. I purchased the book and could not stop listening. What a story! Rarely has a book taken me so deeply into the psychology of human nature ... why they do what they do ... how the mind works. I felt I knew some of these characters better than I knew members of my family. I recommended this book to a teacher/friend for her Advanced Placement English class.

Read this book. It's worth it. I hope Audible makes the sequel available.

22 sur 27 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Nicole
  • 26/12/2013

Very well read, audio is nice and clear.

Any additional comments?

Great audiobook. The story is for you to judge, but the audio was great. The quality was good, the audio was very clear. And the reader was able to change his voice in order to adapt to the characters. One of the best audiobooks I've heard!

2 sur 2 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 18/04/2018

the 1st book I've lived in!!

This is a book that wrapped me up and tossed me around as the story went along. It is somewhat of an Apocalypse story that freaks you to the bone because it is something that you can see happening and it explores the dark reality of the situation!

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Kyle K.
  • 20/02/2018

Poor writing and worse attention to detail

What would have made Blindness better?

The characters contradicted themselves constantly.
A basic understanding of the human psyche would help.

Would you ever listen to anything by Jose Saramago again?

no

Which scene was your favorite?

the end

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

The voice actor was good.

Any additional comments?

Save your time and find another book.

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
  • hussam
  • 26/10/2017

great story but second half dragged on

amaizing story, great performance but the second half was really boring, ending made up for it.

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • ed delice
  • 23/08/2017

Surprised

I was assigned this book over the summer for AP Lit . I thought I was just going to have to numbly read this book hating every part of it but the exact opposite happend. I love this book it is amazing and just beautifully written . I'm so happy I was forced to read this .

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jin Park
  • 14/07/2017

Thought-provoking story

This novel, in which global blindness is shown in my opinion as the form of a thought experiment, provokes our imagination and mind into embracing the core definition of human beings, upon faced with supernatural disasters, to meet the very basic mean of life, survival.

Listening to the audiobook today was a completely different experience than reading the actual book, which I have done more than a decade ago. Nevertheless, it was a joy to follow the footprints of the characters again as each of them, except one person of course, strived to accept his or her unfortunate blindness that none of them has asked for.

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Kunde
  • 04/01/2018

Beeindruckende Story

Habe den Film gesehen und dann das Hörbuch gehört. Im Buch wird das ganze Elend noch viel deutlicher. Man sollte offen sein für die ein oder andere philosophische Diskussion ;)

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Judith
  • 18/12/2010

Blindness

Das Thema ist einfach fantastisch und super gelesen !!!!! So sollen Buecher sein......Danke!