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The Flight from the Enchanter av Iris…
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The Flight from the Enchanter (1956)

av Iris Murdoch

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
5111347,742 (3.42)32
A charismatic businessman casts a dark spell over others in this psychologically suspenseful novel by the Man Booker Prize-winning author of The Black Prince.   Mischa Fox's name is known throughout London, though he himself is rarely seen. Enigmatic and desired, vicious yet sympathetic, he is a model of success, wealth, and charisma.   When Fox turns his entrepreneurial gaze on a small feminist magazine known as the Artemis, his intoxicating influence quickly begins to affect the lives of those involved with the paper: the fragile editor, Hunter; generous Rosa, who splits her time and affections between her brother and two other men; innocent Annette, whose journey from school to the real world ends up being more fraught than she could have foreseen; and their circle of friends and acquaintances, all of whom find themselves both drawn to and repulsed by Fox.   Told with dark humor, keen wit, and intense insight into the seductive nature of power, The Flight from the Enchanter is an intricate and dazzling work of fiction from the author of The Sea, The Sea and Under the Net, "one of the most significant novelists of her generation" (The Guardian).… (mer)
Medlem:shaunie
Titel:The Flight from the Enchanter
Författare:Iris Murdoch
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Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
Betyg:***
Taggar:Ingen/inga

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The Flight from the Enchanter av Iris Murdoch (1956)

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Published in 1956 and set in England, this book tells several simultaneous intersecting stories. It contains a large cast of characters. A primary connecting character, Misha Fox, remains enigmatically in the background but retains a larger-than-life influence over the other storylines. Annette is a young woman who decides to leave school to start experiencing life. Hunter runs a small independent press that produces a magazine, which Fox wants to buy. Hunter’s sister, Rosa, is also involved in the business and tries to keep the sale from happening. She is (reluctantly) involved in a complicated relationship with two brothers, Jan and Stefan. There are many other characters that float in and out of the narrative. It reads as a pastiche of different people living in proximity to each other. I found it reasonably entertaining but disjointed. There is no overarching story arc. Themes include migration and emerging independent roles for women. I have read other novels by Iris Murdoch that I enjoyed more than this one. ( )
1 rösta Castlelass | Oct 30, 2022 |
It is interesting to hear what A.N. Wilson has to say about this book and the time it was written.
The novel has a dedication to Elias Canetti who Wilson maintains was of "immense importance...as a representative of what she wanted to do with her life: her intellectual and literary career."
Canetti was a cruel man who treated Murdoch with violence during sex - "incidents which often took place with his (Canetti's wife, Veza) in the next room (Veza was required to bring in trays of coffee afterwards)". He was mentally sadistic to Murdoch as well, and "openly mocked IM to their mutual friends".
And so one can see how Mischa Fox (Mister Fox perhaps), the Svengali to all the indecisive characters in this book, is likely to represent the spell that Canetti exercised over her.
Her novels, and "The Flight From the Enchanter (1955) is her second, "are often haunted by the spectre of a Magician, a Lord of Power who exercises spiritual or erotic dominion over the weaker characters in the book."

Quotes: A.N. Wilson, "Iris Murdoch as I Knew Her", (London 2003), pp.86-89
  ivanfranko | Apr 20, 2022 |
It's been said that you never get to know a writer by reading his or her books. What they show you isn't their self but their literary persona, the voice and authorial character that they've created for the page. It sometimes feels that Iris Murdoch took this one step further: her characters seem entirely artificial but feel nonetheless real. I don't know how far I'd go to defend this theory, but it'd suit a writer who buries her themes and meanings far deeper than most writers do. If escape, independence, and harmful attachments are recurring themes in "The Flight From the Enchanter", don't expect its characters to point you toward them. They're too busy with their own problems to think in those terms. This is an Iris Murdoch novel, so I can't say that it's always a lot of fun to read, but it is impressive. It takes a writer of absolutely phenomenal skill to pull off this sort of slight-of-hand, and Murdoch seems to do it without breaking a sweat.

I actually enjoyed "The Flight From the Enchanter" more than most of the other Murdoch novels I've read. There's something direct about it that I enjoyed. While its characters are, at some level, obvious literary creations, they still come off as more real than they do in Murdoch's more ornate novels -- such as "The Sea, the Sea" -- which sometimes seem to verge on camp. As for the enchanter of the title, an obvious candidate for the role pops up, but the thing about this one is that all of its characters seem stuck in some way or another. They're besotted with somebody, or dependent on another, or have just given up inside. Some manage to make a fresh start at the end of the novel while others don't, and this, more than any of the plot machinations, is what I think really interests the author here. What keeps us going? Can we ever break free of our situations, or of ourselves? These are all great questions, and she deals with them expertly here. More importantly, perhaps, she offers some very good answers by the time the novel's done. As might be expected, this one isn't easy going, but it's still recommended. ( )
1 rösta TheAmpersand | Jul 29, 2020 |
A good if unusual story, a lot of riffing on ancient myths disguised as modern writing. ( )
  charlie68 | Jul 13, 2019 |
Murdoch's second novel masquerades as a straightforward bit of fifties English social satire, with an odd assortment of characters whose strategies for hiding from the unpleasant realities of life are somehow starting to unravel. And it comes with the kind of farcical set-pieces that belong to that sort of story: the disastrous party, the guest hidden in a cupboard when someone else turns up unexpectedly, the frustrated suicide attempt, the shareholders' meeting turned into a riot by a group of elderly Suffragettes, the quango whose male, civil-service minded managers are routed in a subtle administrative coup d'état plotted by the clever young women they brought into the organisation to do the typing...

But this is Iris Murdoch, even if it's very early Iris Murdoch, so we know there has to be something else going on. The title is one obvious clue - the enigmatic, charismatic press baron Mischa Fox, mysteriously connected to so many of the characters, seems to exert his influence more as a magus than as a businessman, and his slimy sidekick Calvin Blick is also more sorcerer's apprentice than henchman. And there's that puzzling dedication to Elias Canetti. Could it be that there's a (twisted) parallel being made to Die Blendung/Auto-da-fé? Admittedly, the only character whose little world survives the book unscathed is the scholar Peter Saward in his book-cave, but the story of Rainborough and his manipulative ex-typist, Miss Casement, definitely has a Canetti flavour to it, as does that (with the genders reversed) of Rosa and the Lusiewicz brothers.

And then there's that gloriously silly opening chapter, a parody of the opening of Vanity Fair, which seems to promise us that Annette will become a subversive, scheming Becky Sharp, but then turns round and shows us her impulsive playfulness as a mere regression to childhood. And much more: you could probably get two or three essays out of the character names alone. A very complicated book, with a lot of not-quite-hidden depths that don't for the moment detract from the entertaining comedy (with a couple of background patches of real tragedy) going on in the foreground. ( )
1 rösta thorold | Jun 28, 2019 |
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» Lägg till fler författare (8 möjliga)

Författarens namnRollTyp av författareVerk?Status
Iris Murdochprimär författarealla utgåvorberäknat
Brockway, JamesBidragsgivaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Eggink, ClaraÖversättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Peccinotti, HarriOmslagsformgivaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Sachs, RobinBerättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
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To Elias Canneti
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It was about three o'clock on a Friday afternoon when Annette decided to leave school.
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A charismatic businessman casts a dark spell over others in this psychologically suspenseful novel by the Man Booker Prize-winning author of The Black Prince.   Mischa Fox's name is known throughout London, though he himself is rarely seen. Enigmatic and desired, vicious yet sympathetic, he is a model of success, wealth, and charisma.   When Fox turns his entrepreneurial gaze on a small feminist magazine known as the Artemis, his intoxicating influence quickly begins to affect the lives of those involved with the paper: the fragile editor, Hunter; generous Rosa, who splits her time and affections between her brother and two other men; innocent Annette, whose journey from school to the real world ends up being more fraught than she could have foreseen; and their circle of friends and acquaintances, all of whom find themselves both drawn to and repulsed by Fox.   Told with dark humor, keen wit, and intense insight into the seductive nature of power, The Flight from the Enchanter is an intricate and dazzling work of fiction from the author of The Sea, The Sea and Under the Net, "one of the most significant novelists of her generation" (The Guardian).

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