- Books

The Garlic Ballads

The Garlic Ballads Now back in print this epic novel of beauty and brutality set in a landscape at once strange and alluring paints a portrait of a people whose fierce passions break the rigid confines of their ancie

  • Title: The Garlic Ballads
  • Author: Mo Yan Howard Goldblatt
  • ISBN: 9781559707756
  • Page: 391
  • Format: Paperback
  • Now back in print, this epic novel of beauty and brutality, set in a landscape at once strange and alluring, paints a portrait of a people whose fierce passions break the rigid confines of their ancient traditions The farmers of Paradise County have been leading a hardscrabble life unchanged for generations The Communist government has encouraged them to plant garlic, buNow back in print, this epic novel of beauty and brutality, set in a landscape at once strange and alluring, paints a portrait of a people whose fierce passions break the rigid confines of their ancient traditions The farmers of Paradise County have been leading a hardscrabble life unchanged for generations The Communist government has encouraged them to plant garlic, but selling the crop is not as simple as they believed Warehouses fill up, taxes skyrocket, and government officials maltreat even those who have traveled for days to sell their harvest A surplus on the garlic market ensues, and the farmers watch in horror as their crops wither and rot in the fields Families are destroyed by the random imprisonment of young and old for supposed crimes against the state The prisoners languish in horrifying conditions in their cells, with only their strength of character and thoughts of their loved ones to save them from madness Meanwhile, a blind minstrel incites the masses to take the law into their own hands, and a riot of apocalyptic proportions follows with savage and unforgettable consequences.

    • [PDF] Download ✓ The Garlic Ballads | by ☆ Mo Yan Howard Goldblatt
      391 Mo Yan Howard Goldblatt
    • thumbnail Title: [PDF] Download ✓ The Garlic Ballads | by ☆ Mo Yan Howard Goldblatt
      Posted by:Mo Yan Howard Goldblatt
      Published :2019-02-22T05:31:49+00:00

    1 thought on “The Garlic Ballads

    1. It’s 3am and there is nothing but darkness around me. Every living soul has slipped into a deep slumber and all there is to hear is the murmur of my breathing. The pillow doesn't seem to listen to the calls of my weary neck and the tang of crisp garlic slowly creeps into the room as I recollect my early dinner. I never bothered about this tiny pungent bulb until last week. The half- torn smile on the vegetable vendor now bothers me too when I dismiss purchasing his wares. Now, all I can see in [...]

    2. Che libro meraviglioso! questo Mo Yan mi ha preso il cuore, me l’ha spezzato, l’ha frantumato ben bene sotto i tacchi, e adesso mi lascia così sanguinante e palpitante, con negli occhi i colori saturi e brillanti di una campagna bucolica, nel naso l’odore nauseabondo dell’aglio putrefatto, degli escrementi, del vomito, sulla pelle e nelle ossa l’ingiuria delle percosse, nelle orecchie il canto delle gesta narrate, nell’anima lo strazio della sopraffazione…Cosa raccontarne? è un r [...]

    3. Probably not the most prudent holiday-read selection, Nobel Prize winner Mo Yan'sThe Garlic Ballads was a relentlessly bleak look at oppression during the Deng Xiaoping era. The story of a quashed revolt by garlic farmers against the Communist regime in the mid '80s was heavy on atmospherics (the redolence of the garlic glut, and ensuing horrifics of post-riot prison life seeped in my pores) but lacking in subtlety and whimsy that made the similarly themedShifu, You'll Do Anything For a Laugh (a [...]

    4. It feels wrong to give only 3* to a winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, but I didn't enjoy this enough to give it four.It is based on a true incident in the 1980s (though conditions described are so basic, it's a shock to realise how recent it is), when farmers rioted after the government refused to buy all the garlic it had told them to grow, because there of the resulting glut. I presume the individual characters are inventions, or compositesRUCTUREEach chapter starts with a few lines of [...]

    5. Scoperto per caso su anobii, me lo ritrovo sullo scaffale mentre curioso in libreria a Castelnuovo e non me lo faccio scappare. Il buon profumo di carta delle pagine fa da contrasto all'odore di aglio del titolo.Secondo libro che leggo di un autore cinese nel giro di poco tempo e che si ricollega direttamente con il primo, letto poche settimane fa: se nel libro di Rong l'ottusità del regime è la causa della distruzione e desertificazione della prateria mongola, qui la stessa ottusità causa lo [...]

    6. Mo Yan is an extraordinary writer and The Garlic Ballads is an impressive novel of politicized art. Banned in China after the massacre in Tiananmen, the book exposes the injustice and indignity of the communist state while also confronting the dogged misguidance of traditionalist belief systems, such as arranged marriages. The narrative focuses primarily on the struggles of two families, those of garlic farmers Gao Yang and Fang Yunqui. The tragedies that befall them interweave back and forth ac [...]

    7. Leggere Mo Yan è una sorpresa continua, uno stimolo a ricercare, leggere, comprendere la storia della Cina. L’era epica della lotta di liberazione, della costruzione del socialismo, e anche della rivoluzione culturale, appartiene ora al passato; un passato nobile, ma irrimediabilmente passato. Resta adesso la durezza del presente, in modo particolare se si appartiene alla classe contadina. La durezza del lavoro della terra, l’incertezza per il raccolto, l’aleatorietà dell’esistenza che [...]

    8. The farmers of Paradise County are encouraged by the Government to plant garlic. When the warehouses fill up and the taxes rise, the garlic begins to decompose, causing the farmers to starve. Mo Yan earned the Nobel Prize in literature 2012. The Garlic Ballads is loosely based on the true story of a revolt, taking place in 1987, against the Chinese government. The book was banned due to it's regime criticism, and I find it strange that Mo Yan has received critic as to being too vague in his clai [...]

    9. Mo Yan in this beautifully written poetic book has the ability to draw you in to the suffering of his characters. He knows how to touch one’s soul. I felt very disturbed by what I was reading, and while I loved this book, I knew that I could read no more about torture. I have yet to try another book written by him because they are all the same, maybe worse.He deserved winning the Nobel Prize for his works, and that is about all I can say. I should have written that it was about farmers in Chin [...]

    10. update: i just found out that The Garlic Ballads was written in 35 days. . what? this is probably one of his toughest books, with scenes that make you both afraid and disgusted, with characters that have no humanity in them and you're still forced to acknowledge that yes! indeed! they are your kin! there are bad things in this world, and then there are horrors, and the only creators of horror are us. i feel like giving mo yan a hug. if his own experience inspired these gruesome stories the man n [...]

    11. If you are a fan of Toni Morrison or Isabel Allende, I can almost guarantee you will like this book. This is literature, great literature, and it's coming out of China. And, Mo Yan (his pen name) is not just a writer coming out of China, he's a great writer. A great writer shows you what you need to see, what you might have overlooked or refused to acknowledge. A great writer leans in to say to you, I'm showing you this, but I'm here. You're not alone. And, after he takes you through field after [...]

    12. I am not going to finish this book because the violence and inhumanity seems never ending. I have read the first sixty pages filled with brutality. Then I randomly skipped to pages further into the book to see if there was any abatement of the grossness and found that there seemed not to be. Then I went to read some reviews by other GR people.Here are several review segments: (one star) This book wasn't for me. I can usually slog through, but really had a hard time. Other reviews seem to indicat [...]

    13. The Garlic Ballads is less bloody than Red Sorghum, but very violent, nonetheless. To begin with, the novel has an epigraph from none other than Stalin, which is—ironically—an admonishment to novelists who try to “distance themselves from politics.” My personal guess is that Mo Yan uses the famous name as a password in order to get his “ballad”—which criticizes corrupt Chinese officials and policemen—past the censors.This novel too has a complicated structure: each chapter is pre [...]

    14. Well, it took me since April to read this damn book, BUT I DID IT. I am so glad that The Garlic Ballads is out of my life. Why, you ask? Because this book is the equivalent of reading Les Miserables. (view spoiler)[ EVERYONE DIES.(hide spoiler)] Not to say that this book isn't good, but the story was depressing and for some reason it was set in 1980's but it felt like feudal China.I know that many of my friends have stated that they will never read this book, so below I have a nice summary of Mo [...]

    15. When it comes to the plight of the farmer and the destitute, Mo Yan has experience in spades. Having come from Revolutionary China, he relates a tale in his introduction to Shifu, You'll Do Anything for a Laugh where his village was so poor and hungry that when a shipment of coal arrived, the people started eating the coal. But Mo Yan doesn't take that kind of personal experience to make his work seem like communist propaganda, making the government seem ornately inhuman and the working man sain [...]

    16. Vẫn là phong cách đúng chất Mạc Ngôn, giản dị mà dữ dội. Ở văn chương của ông, người ta luôn thấy hai khía cạnh đấy đan xen nhau, cứ như là một. Mình chưa bao giờ phải khó nhọc để đọc một tác phẩm của Mạc Ngôn cả, bất luận dung lượng của nó là năm bảy trăm trang hay chỉ dưới một trăm trang.Nếu như "Đàn hương hình" là cái dữ dội đau đớn len lỏi trong từng thớ thịt thì "Cây [...]

    17. What to say about The Garlic BalladsI suppose I will begin with the synopsis. The Garlic Ballads follows the lives of garlic-farming peasants in rural China. Two villagers, Gao Yang and Gao Ma, serve as the focal points for the story. Gao Yang is a garlic farmer with a deformed wife, a blind daughter, and a baby son. He is good-natured, but utterly hapless. He possesses an unwavering faith towards the government (it's no coincidence that his name means "sheep" in Chinese) and seems resigned to t [...]

    18. Written by Mo Yan, winner of the 2012 Nobel Prize for Literature, and originally published in 1988, The Garlic Ballads is a harsh depiction of peasant life in China in the 1980s, when Deng Xiaoping was the country's most influential leader. While I do not doubt Mo's portrayal of the brutality and corruption of government officials, I found the extreme violence and inhumanity within and between peasant families (severe beatings and torture) a bit hard to believe. Instead, I got the sense that man [...]

    19. Al fin.Me demoré un montón en terminarlo porque no estaba realmente metida en la historia, tenia una confusión horrible de nombres y en verdad debería cambiar mi habito de leerlos solo una vez y luego obviarlos porque, sobre todo con nombres tan parecidos como Gao Ma y Gao Yang, la cosa no me esta funcionando.Sinceramente todo el libro es confuso, esta contado en dos tiempos uno siguiendo a cada protagonista y nunca sabes muy bien que cosa pasó primero, cuál es un recuerdo,cuanto maldito t [...]

    20. I just finished, and I think I will need to do some pondering, but my initial impressions of this book centers on a conflict between my understanding of China and the picture I got from this book. If Mr. Mo isn't considered a dissident by the Chinese government, then my understanding of what constitutes a "repressive" regime is way off base. This book is not at all flattering to government officials as it tells of corruption, oppression of peasants and the poorest of the poor, official injustice [...]

    21. The Garlic Ballads is a beautifully written, though stark and somber work of social realism. Based on the true story of Chinese villagers in the midst of a mid-1980's garlic glut, the plot centers around peasants largely bereft of hope and their relationship with corrupt local officials. Amidst the ubiquitous stench of garlic, further stories of love, revenge and familiar relationships evolve. The author's character development is executed exquisitely and will likely evoke heartache in many read [...]

    22. An excellent social realism narrative draped with the overtone of struggle for justice against the evils of both the past and the present. The story of peasantry and poverty in which they live causes one to forget that this novel is actually taking place during the 1980s. The real splendor of the novel lies not in the narrative, which is very clear-cut, in the detailed descriptions, subtle insinuations, and occasionally surreal motifs that run throughout the book. Unfortunately, due to it's folk [...]

    23. The government has encouraged farmers in rural China to plant garlic. Overproduction results in difficulties and finally the farmers tire of corruption and riot. Some characters are captured by the authorities and the story leading up to this is told through flashbacks. There are some fantastical segments which may be hallucinations by the characters. This is a story with a lot of brutality and suffering, but it is told with an ironic touch. (Except for one 'noble speech' by a minor character th [...]

    24. Stark story of life under a corrupt Communist government. Well written right to the end. I understand why the Chinese banned it after Tiananmen Square. Some powerful imagery and strong political messages here in the middle of a love story. Oh, and it won the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize.

    25. Brutal, unyielding, and flummoxing in its violent telling, The Garlic Ballads may have been more aptly titled, The Garlic Laments. This book is shocking and nearly absurd in its rampaging cruelty. I spent most of my time reading it with my eyes bulging from their sockets and my mouth agape. The inhumanity, the senseless, unthinking savagery that human beings are capable of meting our to one another is extraordinary and ghoulish. In these 300 pages I have come across more spilled blood, guts, gor [...]

    26. Ispirato a un fatto realmente accaduto 'Le canzoni dell' aglio' è un romanzo forte e schietto che si avvicina molto a un manifesto di denuncia. Nella Cina degli anni 80 una politica agricola folle obbliga i contadini di questa cittadina fittizia a dedicarsi esclusivamente alle piantagioni di aglio;ciò causa ovviamente un eccesso nel mercato di aglio a scapito degli altri prodotti agricoli causando una vera e propria crisi economica che va tutta a discapito dei contadini più poveri. É proprio [...]

    27. Although as expertly written and pertinent as anything I've yet read by Mo Yan, I found The Garlic Ballads slow going. It was a brutal tale told without magical flourishes, narrative experimentation or humor. Each step of the story is a delineation of horrible events -- one after the other -- until we feel that we've learned more about what terrible, harsh lives these characters are forced to endure than we ever would have wanted. Manslaughter, child abuse, police brutality, lice ridden jails, f [...]

    28. Novela negra por excelencia, algunas escenas se relatan de forma cruda, pero eso no les quita su encanto. Tiene pasajes memorables, descritos de forma exquisita. Es increíble la forma como la vida de todo un condado está inexorablemente atada al destino mismo del ajo que cultivan.

    29. From my blog: thegloballycuriousThe farmers in Paradise County are normal, law-abiding citizens under the Chinese communist regime. They follow the government's orders to plant a bumper crop of garlic, only to end up with piles of unsellable rotting crops as warehouses fill up and prices drop precipitously. When the government does nothing to help the crowds of farmers struggling to move their goods anywhere but back home, the ordinary citizens are forced to take extreme measures to see that som [...]

    30. Suffering. In a word, that is this book. With shades of Kafka's Trial and Castle, as well as Kozinski's The Painted Bird and Orwell's 1984, this book evidences suffering at nearly every conceivable level. Along with this Mo Yan has an incredible predilection for depicting the grotesque and disgusting side of the human bodily experience. Shit, blood, semen, spit, piss, sweat, every 'inelegant' bit of bodily output is given detailed mention here. Taken together what does this mean for the story? A [...]

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *