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Monday, July 11, 2005

What I'm Reading... Blindness

So, I recently finished Nobel Prize Winner Jose Saramago’s novel Blindness. I read this book when it was first published years ago, but when I heard that Atom Egoyan (He’s teeny tiny! I could put him in my pocket!) optioned the book for a film, I decided to re-read it. I love this book. It makes my skin crawl, it feels so real. I love the way he writes dialogue, I love his descriptions, the way he references characters and how at the same moment you can feel helpless and hopeful.

Blindness is a story about a plague of white blindness that strikes citizens of a nameless, timeless city as an epidemic. The blindness spreads rapidly throughout the city and panic ensues. People are quarantined and rapidly degenerate into savages. The story is told from the perspective of a woman, the wife of one of the first to lose their vision, who for some undiscovered reason has kept her sight, yet feigns blindness in order to accompany her husband into quarantine.

This is a book that still horrifies me when I walk the streets downtown and imagine what the city would be like if something like that were to occur. I wonder what I would be like under those conditions? Would I be able to survive? Would I want to? It brings to mind the quality of life issue – how terrible can things be to want to keep living regardless? In the most desperate situations, can you find a moment or a glimmer of happiness that makes it all worth it?

Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 12:49 AM :: 0 Comments:

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