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by Joel Rotenberg,Peter Gay,Stefan Zweig

  • ISBN: 1590171691
  • Author: Joel Rotenberg,Peter Gay,Stefan Zweig
  • ePub ver: 1240 kb
  • Fb2 ver: 1240 kb
  • Rating: 4.4 of 5
  • Language: English
  • Pages: 104
  • Publisher: NYRB Classics (December 9, 2005)
  • Formats: mobi txt doc docx
  • Category: Fiction
  • Subcategory: Genre Fiction
epub Chess Story (New York Review Books Classics) download

Peter Gay is Director of the Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library.

Peter Gay is Director of the Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library. He wrote Schnitzler’s Century: The Making of Middle-Class Culture, 1815–1914. Paperback: 104 pages. Publisher: NYRB Classics (December 9, 2005).

Chess Story, also known as The Royal Game, is the Austrian master Stefan Zweig's final achievement, completed in Brazilian exile and sent off to his American publisher only days before his suicide in 1942. It is the only story in which Zweig looks at Nazism, and he does so with characteristic emphasis on the psychological. Travelers by ship from New York to Buenos Aires find that on board with them is the world champion of chess, an arrogant and unfriendly man. They come together to try their skills against him and are soundly defeated. Then a mysterious passenger. He wrote Schnitzler's Century: The Making of Middle-Class Culture, 1815-1914.

with the purchase of any eligible product. Chess Story, also known as The Royal Game, is the Austrian master Stefan Zweig’s final achievement, completed in Brazilian exile and sent off to his American publisher only days before his suicide in 1942.

Chess Story, Stefan Zweig (Joel Rotenberg, translator) This book, mailed off to his publishers days before he committed suicide while living .

Chess Story, Stefan Zweig (Joel Rotenberg, translator) This book, mailed off to his publishers days before he committed suicide while living as an exile in Brazil, is his most personal fiction. Title: Chess StoryAuthor: Zweig, Stefan/ Rotenberg, Joel (TRN)/ Gay, Peter (INT)Publisher: Random House IncPublication Date: of Pages: Type: PAPERBACKLibrary of Congress: 2005012029. Reading Record Stefan Zweig Book Challenge Lus Jane Austen Connect Branches.

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Stefan Zweig, Peter Gay (Introduction). Joel Rotenberg (Translator). Travelers by ship from New York to Chess Story, also known as The Royal Game, is the Austrian master Stefan Zweig's final achievement, completed in Brazilian exile and sent off to his American publisher only a matter of days before his suicide in 1942.

Zweig - Chess Books Books from Fishpond. Millions of products all with free shipping Worldwide. Lowest prices guaranteed. By Stefan Zweig, Alexander Starritt, Petra Borner.

Chess Story, also known as The Royal Game, is the Austrian master Stefan Zweig's final achievement, completed in Brazilian exile and sent off to his American publisher only days before his suicide in 1942. It is the only story in which Zweig looks at Nazism, and he does so with characteristic emphasis on the psychological.Travelers by ship from New York to Buenos Aires find that on board with them is the world champion of chess, an arrogant and unfriendly man. They come together to try their skills against him and are soundly defeated. Then a mysterious passenger steps forward to advise them and their fortunes change. How he came to possess his extraordinary grasp of the game of chess and at what cost lie at the heart of Zweig's story.This new translation of Chess Story brings out the work's unusual mixture of high suspense and poignant reflection.
Comments (7)

Ynap
Poignant, in that the ending of the novel - which I won't spoil - most likely reveals Zweig's rationale for his own suicide.

This novella is fast-paced and even frantic at times, and yet it is interspersed with the seeming apathy of the champion chess player, whose sole motivation in an otherwise colorless life is to win at the chess board.

All the other characters, apart from the chess champion, are more nuanced, have feelings and imagination. I cannot help but see a very clear analogy to Liberalism and Fascism, and the despair of Zweig upon witnessing it helplessly. In the final matches the reader can identify so much of what preceded WWII: apathy vs ambition; disdain vs fear; vanity vs humility. Isn't the chess board a proxy for Europe itself?

And the finale, which to the story is suitable, if not slightly predictable. It is also very symbolic of the author's ultimate defeat, a check mate to his hopes followed by a discreet exit from life.
Malanim
Two opposite characters. One is a peasant with no family, the other, a rich Austrian aristocrat. One is almost illiterate, the other a well educated man, one of the most famous lawyers in Vienna. One dominates chess, the other is dominated by the game, the "nullifier of nullities". Black and white. Opposite sides of the board. The boiling prewar European scenario generates both of them, and they are destined to meet on board of a ship that will take both to South America for very different reasons. Confrontation is inevitable. Pragmatism against idealism. Only one will end up victorious. The only one with a clear grasp of reality and how we should adapt and behave even in the most unfavorable situations. But is victory worth it?
FEISKO
As summarized by another reviewer, the story takes place on a cruise ship en route from New York to Buenos Aires in 1941. The world chess champion, Mirko Czentovic, is on board. Czentovic is a chess prodigy who is singularly ungifted in other areas of the intellect and social graces. Also on board is Dr. B, a former solicitor for the Austrian imperial family who is traveling to South America as a refugee from the Nazi regime.
At the outset, considering Czentovic's isolated and emotionally deprived childhood, I was prepared to allow him his arrogance and conceit. Acknowledged, he was a master at chess and his boorish behavior could be excused. When Dr. B becomes peripherally involved in the chess match and exhibits a mastery of moves, it becomes clear that this man has somehow or other been absorbed into the exalted realm of chess. As his story unfolds, the reader enters the world of isolation and solitary that Dr. B endured at the hands of his Nazi tormenters. Zweig is so masterful at the depiction of the incarceration and the man's mental salvation through the game of chess that we as readers are carried along so forcibly that we leave the confines of our homes for the world of Dr. B. Every emotion he experienced, every racing of his pulse, every fearful moment, his ultimate dissociation of his personality and his breakdown are experienced by the reader. The descriptions are powerful and cause a visceral reaction that is astonishing. As I was reading, I started to note a racing pulse and sweating and a sense of uncontrollable foreboding. As the story raced to its conclusion, I had the urge to shout, "Halt! Don't play again!" I wept when I set the book down. The tears were for Dr. B, all of the victims of the Nazi carnage and perhaps also a reaction to what came to pass, the suicide of the author. This gem of a small book explores and disturbs the human psyche like no other.
Grokinos
Just before he committed suicide in 1942, Stefan Zweig completed this short novella for publication. Although it is oblique in manner and relatively light in tone, it is the only book in which Zweig directly addresses the methods of the National Socialists, who in the Anschluss of 1938 took over his country, Austria, from which Zweig himself had fled some years before.

The framework is deceptively casual. One of the passengers on an ocean liner from New York to Buenos Aires is the world chess champion, Mirko Czentovic. Something of an idiot savant, knowing nothing but chess, Czentovic has become arrogant and mercenary. But one of the passengers on the ship pays him to take on a small group of amateur players. They are unexpectedly joined by a unassuming man emerging from the shadows, who offers advice that forces the champion to a draw. How the man, known only as Dr. B, became so proficient at chess, is the subject of the long revelation that is the centerpiece of the story. It is an oblique denunciation of the methods of the occupiers of his country, but also a testament to the powers of the human spirit necessary to survive them. The match between Dr. B and Czentovic that ends the book becomes a kind of proxy for the war on freedom then being waged in Europe, and its outcome is by no means a foregone conclusion.

I got a lot of pleasure from reading this in the lovely NYRB edition, with a most readable translation by Joel Rotenberg, a fine preface by Peter Gay, and an intriguing cover by Katy Homans. But I am perhaps at a disadvantage from having recently read and reviewed Zweig's novel THE POST-OFFICE GIRL, another posthumous publication from the same press. By comparison, CHESS STORY is both less personal and less real. It cannot match the verve and depth of character of the first part of the novel, and although it avoids the dark tone of Zweig's description of depression-era Austria in the second part, it also lacks its sense of authenticity. By using chess almost as a metaphor for political oppression, Zweig (as in some of Kafka's stories) moves from physical reality into the realm of ideas. I found it fascinating, but I didn't quite believe it, and felt too little connection between the chess game on the liner and what was really happening in occupied Europe. But maybe this was as much as Zweig could manage to write openly at the time. The true depths of despair could be shown only in the taking of his life.

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