Josef Škvorecký

Bitter World

Trans. Andrzej S. Jagodziňski, Jan Stachowski
Gorzki świat
Gorzki świat
Wydawnictwo Czarne, 2020, 336 pp
Language: Polish
Genre: Literary fiction
ISBN: 9788380499799
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In addition to Václav Havel, Bohumil Hrabal and Milan Kundera, Josef Škvorecký belonged to a generation of post-war writers who significantly influenced contemporary Czech literature. His most well-known and awarded novel, Příběh inženýra lidských duší (The Engineer of Human Souls, 1977), is considered a masterpiece and inspiration for the next generation of authors.

This selection presents many texts unknown to the Polish reader: Škvorecký’s short stories with a Jewish theme, created in the 1950s, a cycle about the terrifying period of Stalinism, and stories dedicated to jazz, which appears to the protagonists as a symbol of freedom. Despite the fact that the plot of almost all texts from this collection is set under totalitarianism, Škvorecký’s sense of humour and authentic distance from reality protects against the definitive feeling of defeat and despair.

Language: Polish
Title: Gorzki świat
Publisher: Wydawnictwo Czarne
Year: 2020
Pages: 336
Genre: Literary fiction