The Joke

The Joke

Definitive Version

Book - 1992 | 1st ed
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Publisher: New York, NY : HarperCollins Publishers, c1992
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780060190309
Branch Call Number: F KUNDE-M
Characteristics: xi, 317 p. ; 25 cm


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Oct 05, 2017

Milan Kundera's first novel, The Joke, was initially published four and a half decades ago but stands the test of time as a great, tragic story of what happens when ordinary people, trying to live ordinary lives, are caught up in a political system that drains them of their humanity. Published in the former Czechoslovakia during a time when the Communist constraints on art were temporarily relaxed, The Joke follows the lives of four people during the Stalinist period. The book was banned following the Soviet-led occupation of Czechoslovakia in 1968, but its publication abroad in many languages taught the world what life is like in a society where nothing is private, not even love. But The Joke is not only a "political" novel; it is also a story about how anger and bitterness can deform an individual, how revenge can be empty, and how personal contentment may rest, after all, in the pure and simple things in one's world.


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