The Street of Crocodiles Polish : Sklepy cynamonowe , lit. First published in Polish, the collection was translated into English by Celina Wieniewska in Schulz's earliest literary endeavors can probably be dated back to Although it was already in that Schultz wrote the short story A July Night , it was included in the second volume entitled Sanatorium Under the Sign of the Hourglass which was published in All Debora Vogel's efforts to have Schulz's works published were in vain.
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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. The Street of Crocodiles by Bruno Schulz ,. Celina Wieniewska Translator. Mikolaj Dutsch.
Hana Jechova Translator. Vivanti Salmon Translator. Jerzy Ficowski Introduction. The Street of Crocodiles in the Polish city of Drogobych is a street of memories and dreams where recollections of Bruno Schulz's uncommon boyhood and of the eerie side of his merchant family's life are evoked in a startling blend of the real and the fantastic. Most memorable - and most chilling - is the portrait of the author's father, a maddened shopkeeper who imports ra The Street of Crocodiles in the Polish city of Drogobych is a street of memories and dreams where recollections of Bruno Schulz's uncommon boyhood and of the eerie side of his merchant family's life are evoked in a startling blend of the real and the fantastic.
Most memorable - and most chilling - is the portrait of the author's father, a maddened shopkeeper who imports rare birds' eggs to hatch in his attic, who believes tailors' dummies should be treated like people, and whose obsessive fear of cockroaches causes him to resemble one.
Bruno Schulz, a Polish Jew killed by the Nazis in , is considered by many to have been the leading Polish writer between the two world wars. Bruno Schulz's untimely death at the hands of a Nazi stands as one of the great losses to modern literature.
During his lifetime, his work found little critical regard, but word of his remarkable talents gradually won him an international readership. This volume brings together his complete fiction, including three short stories and his final surviving work, Sanatorium Under the Sign of the Hourglass.
Illustrated with Schulz's original drawings, this edition beautifully showcases the distinctive surrealist vision of one of the twentieth century's most gifted and influential writers. Get A Copy.
Paperback , pages. Published March 1st by Penguin Books first published More Details Original Title. Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
To ask other readers questions about The Street of Crocodiles , please sign up. Very very good writer, the material is packed with strange nuances that render a surreal and bizarre world poised somewhere between reality and death See 2 questions about The Street of Crocodiles….
Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 4. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Start your review of The Street of Crocodiles. Nov 12, Jeffrey Keeten rated it really liked it.
In fact, it is enough to stare at any of them, and at once you meet an insistent clinging look which freezes you with the certainty of fulfillment.
Even the schoolgirls wear their hair ribbons in a characteristic way and walk on their slim legs with a peculiar step, an impure expression in their eyes that foreshadows their future corruption. Desire is wrapped around the words of the text squeezing them tight, producing extended breasts, hips, and flared stocking clad legs.
The young lad, who is our narrator, is of age to be beset by those hormones that make every female seem like the personification of Aphrodite. Even the glimpse of an elbow or a soft white neck or a foot can give a young man flutters in his stomach. He moved with the many-limbed, complicated movements of a strange ritual in which I recognized with horror an imitation of the ceremonial crawl of a cockroach.
Schulz self-portrait. All the stories are connected but disjointed, and Schulz would often spin this reader off into the snow, leaving me spitting slivers of ice from my mouth.
I always ran after the sled and climbed back on to watch with slitted eyes for low hanging tree limbs to duck and to be prepared to pull my snagged coat loose from the dead, brittle bushes overhanging the road. The diffuse whiteness of light filtered by the snow, by the pale air, by the milky space, was like the gray paper of an engraving on which the thick bushes corresponded to the deep black lines of the decoration. He was moved into a ghetto. He was discovered by an admirer of his writing, a Nazi Gestapo officer named Felix Landau.
He was commissioned by Landau, in exchange for protection, to paint a mural on a wall of his residency in Drohobycz. Schulz had it better than most, but fate is a fickle wench, and on November 19th, , he was gunned down while walking home with a loaf of bread by another Gestapo officer, Karl Gunther, who was enraged that Landau had shot and killed one of his personal Jews. What a gift to humanity it would have been if the Nazi officers had just had the decency to shoot each other.
A piece of the mural. This collection is just a glimpse of the body of work that we would have enjoyed from this talented writer if his life had not been tragically cut short.
He was working on a novel at the time of his murder, but it has never surfaced. There is always hope that someday it will been found. He was a new star with his own unique spectrum who became a supernova before he had a chance to shine across the universe. View all 27 comments.
Sep 16, Bill Kerwin rated it really liked it Shelves: weird-fiction. A strange, uneven book of fiction, but one that is oddly compelling.
It is somewhat like magic realism, but more primeval and mythic than the dark fairy tales of Marquez. It is a little like Kafka too, but much more energetic, teeming with life.
If Egon Schiele wrote fiction, it might be something like this. View all 11 comments. Jan 30, Vit Babenco rated it it was amazing. Every unique author is unique in his own way… And Bruno Schulz is one of the inarguable proofs. The Demiurge has had no monopoly of creation, for creation is the privilege of all spirits. Matter has been given infinite fertility, inexhaustible vitality, and, at the same time, a seductive power of temptation which invites us to create as well.
In the depth of matter, indistinct smiles are shaped, tensions build up, attempts at form appear. The whole of matter pulsates with infinite possibilities t Every unique author is unique in his own way… And Bruno Schulz is one of the inarguable proofs.
The whole of matter pulsates with infinite possibilities that send dull shivers through it. Waiting for the life-giving breath of the spirit, it is endlessly in motion.
It entices us with a thousand sweet, soft, round shapes which it blindly dreams up within itself. And man created a mannequin… But what is much more important man created literature and peopled it with all kinds of sentient mannequins. On that map, made in the style of baroque panoramas, the area of the Street of Crocodiles shone with the empty whiteness that usually marks polar regions or unexplored countries of which almost nothing is known. The lines of only a few streets were marked in black and their names given in simple, unadorned lettering, different from the noble script of the other captions.
The cartographer must have been loath to include that district in the city and his reservations found expression in the typographical treatment. And miracles happen there because for a child everything that happens is a miracle full of magical mystery.
View all 4 comments. Mar 16, Lisa rated it it was amazing Shelves: books-to-read-before-you-die. Before Bruno Schulz was shot in the street in one of the many actions of Nazi Terror in , he was a unique human being with a beautiful sense of humour and a lightness that makes one feel sad.
Before Bruno Schulz fell victim to the absurdity of fascist hatred, he was a writer of seemingly endless imagination, who could find magic in the smallest of circumstances and even let a Tailor's Dummy have its rights. Before Bruno Schulz lost his life and most of his writing to the worst criminal reign Before Bruno Schulz was shot in the street in one of the many actions of Nazi Terror in , he was a unique human being with a beautiful sense of humour and a lightness that makes one feel sad.
Before Bruno Schulz became one of the few known victims of the Nazis who stand as symbols for all those countless common people with equal rights to remembrance and love who were wiped out without a trace left, he was a master of village life description. The terror of tickling is vivid in the book that preceded the terror of mass murder. Imagine a world in which tickling is still a threat.
Imagine a world in which people can still live their boring lives in small towns without worrying that the big hatred may strike with the power of empathy-free psychopathy turned epidemic. Imagine the world of The Street Of Crocodiles still intact in our hearts. For imagination and empathy are siblings that need to go hand in hand in our absurd world. To Bruno Schulz, lest we forget: "The Demiurge," said my father, " has had no monopoly of creation, for creation is the privilege of all spirits.
Thus the urge to destroy others.
The Street of Crocodiles and Other Stories Reader’s Guide
On the other hand, descriptions of incredible events, absurd landscapes, and bizarre animals make them seem matter-of-fact. I believe that even my mother noticed this strange resemblance, although we never discussed the subject. Direct access to what really happened is impossible, which makes the question of what is believable irrelevant. Whether the attention he gets from Emil has a desirable outcome is unclear. His cousin shows him a collection of pornographic photographs, and their effect on the narrator seems not entirely pleasurable. The narrator frequently contrasts his boredom with various possibilities for relieving it, but these possibilities always possess ominous, if not dangerous, qualities.
The Street of Crocodiles
Bruno Schulz. On the map of Poland the town hides itself from you; you have to search out the tiniest print to discover Drogobych. In this cramped crevice of a place Schulz too hid himself—though not from the Nazis. Urged on by a group of writers, the Polish underground devised a means of escape—false papers and a hiding place. By Bruno Schulz. Translated by Celina Wieniewska.
The Street of Crocodiles and Other Stories
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