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Vita tänder (2000)

av Zadie Smith

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MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygDiskussioner / Omnämnanden
12,119213361 (3.74)2 / 664
From the Publisher: On New Year's morning, 1975, Archie Jones sits in his car on a London road and waits for the exhaust fumes to fill his Cavalier Musketeer station wagon. Archie-working-class, ordinary, a failed marriage under his belt-is calling it quits, the deciding factor being the flip of a 20-pence coin. When the owner of a nearby halal butcher shop (annoyed that Archie's car is blocking his delivery area) comes out and bangs on the window, he gives Archie another chance at life and sets in motion this richly imagined, uproariously funny novel. Epic and intimate, hilarious and poignant, White Teeth is the story of two North London families-one headed by Archie, the other by Archie's best friend, a Muslim Bengali named Samad Iqbal. Pals since they served together in World War II, Archie and Samad are a decidedly unlikely pair. Plodding Archie is typical in every way until he marries Clara, a beautiful, toothless Jamaican woman half his age, and the couple have a daughter named Irie (the Jamaican word for "no problem"). Samad-devoutly Muslim, hopelessly "foreign"-weds the feisty and always suspicious Alsana in a prearranged union. They have twin sons named Millat and Magid, one a pot-smoking punk-cum-militant Muslim and the other an insufferable science nerd. The riotous and tortured histories of the Joneses and the Iqbals are fundamentally intertwined, capturing an empire's worth of cultural identity, history, and hope. Zadie Smith's dazzling first novel plays out its bounding, vibrant course in a Jamaican hair salon in North London, an Indian restaurant in Leicester Square, an Irish poolroom turned immigrant cafe, a liberal public school, a sleek science institute. A winning debut in every respect, White Teeth marks the arrival of a wondrously talented writer who takes on the big themes-faith, race, gender, history, and culture-and triumphs.… (mer)
  1. 61
    Small Island av Andrea Levy (CVBell)
    CVBell: Like White Teeth, Small Island illuminates the Caribbean immigrant experience in England, and like Zadie Smith, Levy is a major talent.
  2. 42
    Brick Lane av Monica Ali (Booksloth)
  3. 20
    The Girl Who Fell From the Sky av Heidi W. Durrow (sduff222)
  4. 20
    Apples av Richard Milward (rory1000)
  5. 00
    Marken under hennes fötter av Salman Rushdie (ateolf)
  6. 00
    Hundra år av ensamhet av Gabriel Garcia Marquez (renardkitsune)
  7. 11
    Major Pettigrews sista chans av Helen Simonson (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: Readers will enjoy White Teeth and Major Pettigrew's Last Stand for their character development and humor, along with lighthearted treatment of serious topics such as race relations, religious fanaticism, self-understanding, and similar aspects of modern English life.… (mer)
  8. 00
    Den tjugosjunde staden av Jonathan Franzen (rjuris)
  9. 02
    A Cupboard Full of Coats av Yvvette Edwards (vimandvigor)
    vimandvigor: multi-ethnic cast of characters; set in London; literary writing style.
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engelska (199)  spanska (4)  italienska (3)  nederländska (3)  katalanska (2)  franska (1)  finska (1)  Alla språk (213)
Visa 1-5 av 213 (nästa | visa alla)
This novel sat on my TBR list for quite a while, 5 and 1/2 years. I had decided that I wanted to read something by Zadie Smith and determined that White Teeth was where I would start. The characters caught my attention right away, very different. The direction of the story changed frequently and in odd directions, keeping my attention. But then either the plot slowed down or I got comfortable with its turns.The plot became like a meandering river, slow, relaxing, no longer surprising, maybe even a little tedious. The pace picked up a bit at the end, but not enough to forget the aimless drifting. ( )
  afkendrick | Oct 24, 2020 |
Excellent! ( )
  maryroberta | Sep 29, 2020 |
I was initially drawn in by Part 1, the peculiar story of Archie, lost interest in Part 2, the story of Samad, and was reinvested by Part 3, identifying with the struggles of teenage Irie. The diverse cast of characters was a real selling point for me. Smith does have a flair for dialogue and all of the characters voices were clear and unique in my mind. My hat is off to her for bringing this motley crew back together at the end and wrapping it all up with a neat little bow. ( )
  luzdelsol | Jul 31, 2020 |
"They cannot escape their history any more than you yourself can lose your shadow."

Many readers will regard White Teeth simply as a teeming family saga but that would undersell it as it is much more than that. It is also a satire on religion and culture in modern day Britain and covers many of the major talking points in today's diverse society. It is often humorous and life-affirming where, when the doorbell rings, a suitable greeting is “Encyclopaedias or God?”

The novel opens with Archie Jones attempting suicide because his wife Ophelia, “a violet-eyed Italian with a faint moustache,” has divorced him. He survives and a few weeks later marries
Jamaican Clara Bowden who is several decades his junior. Archie is a bit of a failure not only in marriage (he got a Hoover as a divorce settlement) but in life as well. He finished tied thirteenth in the 1948 Olympics and works devising ways of folding advertising materials. He is indecisive preferring the toss a coin to make his decisions. His best friend is Samad Iqbal, a Bangladeshi immigrant whom Archie served with during his military days at the very end of WWII.

Like Archie, Samad is the husband of a much younger wife, Alsana, but unlike Archie and Clara their union was an arranged one. Samad works as a waiter in London's West End. Both couples have children of a similar age—Magid and Millat, the twin sons of Samad and Alsana, and Irie the daughter of Archie and Clara.

As might be expected there are generational tensions and ethnic frictions between the two families but the author is not content with this. Into this bubbling maelstrom she throws in the Chalfens, a Catholic-Jewish family. Marcus Chalfens is a scientist working on a genetically-engineered mouse, allowing the author to introduce a radical animal rights group (FATE), a Muslim brotherhood known as the Keepers of the Eternal and Victorious Islamic Nation (KEVIN) and Clara’s Jehovah’s Witness mother and her Church members who will all propel the story to its dramatic conclusion.

Thankfully the author avoids trying to tie up all the loose ends and reconciling the various different factions in the final chapter as this just wouldn't ultimately ring true as in reality reconciliation between such diverse groups is highly unlikely.

This is a novel jam packed full of talking points, covering such diverse issues as gender, faith, race, culture, sexuality, adolescence, prejudice and history to name but a few. All are deftly handled and she has managed to avoid the pitfalls of stereotyping which is all quite remarkable given that this is the author's first novel. Smith has tried to give the dialogue, in particular the Caribbean side of it, an authentic feel which I initially found a little disconcerting but in the end I generally managed to work out what was being said.

The blurb on the back of my copy describes this novel as "An impressive début, not only for its vitality and verve, but mainly for the sheer audacity of its scope and vision" and overall I would have to totally agree with that assessment. Despite being over 500 pages long at no time did I feel that a word was wasted. A very enjoyable read. ( )
  PilgrimJess | Jul 19, 2020 |
Picked this up while on holidays a few years back. Was one of the few english language books on offer in a tiny shop in rural Sweden, so I didn't really know what to expect from it. Completely loved it - totally engrossing and wonderfully written. One of my favourite surprise reads. ( )
  misterebby | Jul 5, 2020 |
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» Lägg till fler författare (15 möjliga)

Författarens namnRollTyp av författareVerk?Status
Smith, Zadieprimär författarealla utgåvorbekräftat
Akura, LynnOmslagmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Brinkman, SophieÖversättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Elden, Willem vanBidragsgivaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Grimaldi, LauraÖversättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat

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'What's past is prologue'
-- The Tempest, Act II, scene i
In this wrought-iron world of criss-cross cause and effect, could it be that the hidden throb I stole from them did not affect their future?
-- Vladimir Nabokov, Lolita
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Early in the morning, late in the century, Cricklewood Broadway. At 06.27 hours on 1 January 1975, Alfred Archibald Jones was dressed in corduroy and sat in a fume-filled Cavalier Musketeer Estate face down on the steering wheel, hoping the judgment would not be too heavy upon him.
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From the Publisher: On New Year's morning, 1975, Archie Jones sits in his car on a London road and waits for the exhaust fumes to fill his Cavalier Musketeer station wagon. Archie-working-class, ordinary, a failed marriage under his belt-is calling it quits, the deciding factor being the flip of a 20-pence coin. When the owner of a nearby halal butcher shop (annoyed that Archie's car is blocking his delivery area) comes out and bangs on the window, he gives Archie another chance at life and sets in motion this richly imagined, uproariously funny novel. Epic and intimate, hilarious and poignant, White Teeth is the story of two North London families-one headed by Archie, the other by Archie's best friend, a Muslim Bengali named Samad Iqbal. Pals since they served together in World War II, Archie and Samad are a decidedly unlikely pair. Plodding Archie is typical in every way until he marries Clara, a beautiful, toothless Jamaican woman half his age, and the couple have a daughter named Irie (the Jamaican word for "no problem"). Samad-devoutly Muslim, hopelessly "foreign"-weds the feisty and always suspicious Alsana in a prearranged union. They have twin sons named Millat and Magid, one a pot-smoking punk-cum-militant Muslim and the other an insufferable science nerd. The riotous and tortured histories of the Joneses and the Iqbals are fundamentally intertwined, capturing an empire's worth of cultural identity, history, and hope. Zadie Smith's dazzling first novel plays out its bounding, vibrant course in a Jamaican hair salon in North London, an Indian restaurant in Leicester Square, an Irish poolroom turned immigrant cafe, a liberal public school, a sleek science institute. A winning debut in every respect, White Teeth marks the arrival of a wondrously talented writer who takes on the big themes-faith, race, gender, history, and culture-and triumphs.

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