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"The thing can be further complicated if we start off with the word 'self-censored'. We get the message, we cross it out, but since we are not rascals, we indicate the fact, we put in 'self-censored'; they give it to us, we feel intimidated, we acquiesce, so we cross 'self-censored' out and put it back: self-censored. As you can see, the text is hardly changed (long live close attention to detail), while the poor domestic pen-pusher feels less than triumphant. And so does the reader. And if you don't know why, think of the fact that what has been said above might have also been influenced by what has been said above..."
(from A Little Hungarian Pornography, translated by Judith Sollosy)

"'I have some good news and some bad news. The good news is that I have only one piece of bad news. And the bad news is that you, Comrade, are about to die.'" (From: A Little Hungarian Pornography, translated by Judith Sollosy)

"There's this woman. She hates me. Shadow. She calls me Shadow. For instance: so you're here again, Shadow? she'll ask, hanging about? At other times: it's stuffed cabbage for lunch, Shadow, you mind? Or playfully I'm casting my Shadow before me, by which she means me, it's a reference to me, and it's supposed to mean that I'm asking for big trouble. However, this playful abandon does not necessarily mean she's in high spirits, though when she is in high spirits, she sometimes hoots merrily: Shadow world! which, like it or not, is yet another reference to yours truly. On the other hand, when her spirits are low, when her older sister calls from Lubeck, for instance, or when she takes it into her head she's gained too much weight, though I swear to high heaven that I could just die for every ounce of her living flesh, she'll declare that I am the tree that keeps her from seeing the forest."
(From: She Loves Me, translated by Judith Sollosy)

"Esterhazy's prose is jumpy, allusive, and slangy. ...there is vividness, an electric crackle. The sentences are active and concrete. Physical details leap from the murk of emotional ambivalence."
(John Updike, The New Yorker)



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