Them

  • Title: Them
  • Author: Joyce Carol Oates Elaine Showalter
  • ISBN: 9780345484406
  • Page: 337
  • Format: Paperback
  • [PDF] Read ✓ Them : by Joyce Carol Oates Elaine Showalter - Them, Them From the s through the race riots of the members of the Wendall family living in inner city Detroit struggle to understand the obscure forces constantly tearing at their lives and happines
    [PDF] Read ✓ Them : by Joyce Carol Oates Elaine Showalter - Them, Them From the s through the race riots of the members of the Wendall family living in inner city Detroit struggle to understand the obscure forces constantly tearing at their lives and happines

    • [PDF] Read ✓ Them : by Joyce Carol Oates Elaine Showalter
      337Joyce Carol Oates Elaine Showalter
    Them

    About Joyce Carol Oates Elaine Showalter


    1. Joyce Carol Oates is a recipient of the National Book Award and the PEN Malamud Award for Excellence in Short Fiction She is also the recipient of the 2005 Prix Femina for The Falls She is the Roger S Berlind Distinguished Professor of the Humanities at Princeton University, and she has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters since 1978 Pseudonyms Rosamond Smith and Lauren Kelly.


    177 Comments


    1. As a stranger in the World According to Joyce Carol Oates, I established one essential fact in reading them The woman is indeed a superb writer From page one, this novel published when Oates was 31 , pulls you in with its confident rhythms, sharp dialogue, and natural storytelling ease It s the sordid and surreal chronicle of a white trash family in Detroit, spanning the years 1937 to 1967 Loretta Wendall is the family s crude, optimistic matriarch her children Maureen and Jules struggle to fash [...]

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    2. Around page 260, I stopped wanting to find out what happened to this miserable crew I didn t mind if they all ended up going to Woodstock and scoring bad acid and drowning in one of those photogenic mudbaths In fact yay, way to go It had been something of a struggle to bother about these people to begin with The novel is based on the life of the Maureen character Maureen was a real person JCO met her round about 1962, she was a student in JCO s evening class at the University of Detroit JCO disc [...]

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    3. I honestly don t get it.This is a book in which every character, all the time, is confused At first, I thought maybe Ms Oates was not quite so sympathetic an observer as she thinks she is and that she may just think that her poor characters are poor because they re dumb But no The non poor characters are just as befuddled I have no idea how they get through their days These people are constantly surrounded by a world that mystifies them, and they seem unable to remember things like where they we [...]

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    4. SpoilersJoyce Carol Oates Them is a dark yet beautiful piece of work At times, it reminds me of Flannery O Connor, or McCullers southern gothic style Them , although considered a work of realistic fiction , is just slightly insane, like someone chatty Cathy waiting at a lonely bus stop with you at 2am Its imbalance is betrayed rather in the lines of its face than any suspect reasoning.This story runs across two generations in a white working class family Them s characters carry all the acrid pre [...]

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    5. What can you say about JCO The most prolific great novelist of our times She s written probably over a hundred books, all illustrating her depth and wisdom as a writer She s taken modern icons and major headlines, from the life of Marilyn Monroe and Ted Kennedy to the race riots of the sixties, but mainly she s gone behind the scenes of peoples private lives, to illustrate through literally hundreds of short stories and dozens of novels her breadth and scope of knowledge and attention to the mos [...]

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    6. It was a relief to reach the end of this based in fact novel of Detroit poverty and violence Them spans two generations of a family who longs for better things, but can t make a peaceful, healthy, affluent life happen Oates starts with Loretta as an optimistic teen stuck caring for her alcoholic father and older brother, working at a dry cleaners She really breaks your heart by getting you to feel her young character s yearning for a better life, then showing how they get sucked into prostituti [...]

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    7. I thought this book was great at first The further in I got, the less I could stand it It just became and dull and predictable Even the characters seem to grow weary of it, muddling through their adult lives in a total stupor At about page 245 things took a turn for the worse Yet somehow I managed to slog through it until chapter 12 Who wants to read page after page of two boring, half asleep characters going through mysterious 60s style sex scenes What s so interesting about these people anyw [...]

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    8. Joyce Carol Oates is the Tom Waits of highbrow pulp fiction.My friend Jonathan Kotulski made the above statement, mostly in jest I think, during a recent phone conversation.We had been talking about Kafka, Musil, Borges, and David Foster Wallace, then I mentioned that I was still feverishly reading novels and short stories by Joyce Carol Oates, and that I didn t completely understand why The Tom Waits comparison came from the fact that she has produced a huge catalog, and managed to stay consist [...]

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    9. As soon as she read the first page of a novel she was pleased, startled, excited to know that this was real, the world of this novel She could draw near to a man and through half closed eyes assess him, never really looking at him it was a feeling in her blood There were certain cycles to go through The cycle had begun when he had opened the door of his car for her, and in a minute or two it would end with his sudden paralyzed tension, his broken breath against her face, the familiar urgent sign [...]

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    10. One of those books that literally changed the way I saw the world, at least for a little while, maybe longer and I mean literally I looked at everything differently with my eyeballs, with different care and intent After I put it down, I had to pick up a friend at the bus depot We were using the bus because we were poor college students, but our lives were going to be pretty good I found myself really noticing everyone else around me, and thinking about them, and understanding how specific marker [...]

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    11. This is the 3rd novel in the quartet of the Wonderland Series, and not having read the other books, I was unsure as to whether I would be able to pick this up and catch on Never fearJoyce carol Oates does it right You can read this book and not have ever even heard of the others and still enjoy it on its own She takes you back to the 5o s in Detroit and lets you see and feel how it was to be poor and struggling in those days It s about race, class, family, love, urban life, marriage, women, the [...]

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    12. I made it about 200 pages into this sucker it s a big book Her writing is beautiful, which is why I was determined to keep reading But then I was forced to put the book down for an entire crazy weekend, and by Monday I realized that I just didn t care I had no emotional attachment to any of the characters who are all incredibly dysfunctional I just can t see what would possibly be in the next hundreds of pages except pointless dysfunction and strangely stoic sexual encounters Not worth it.

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    13. This is probably the best book I ve ever read The book is long 508 pages and the story is thick The lives of Loretta, Maureen, and Jules all take unexpected, yet somewhat expected turns throughout their trying lives It can be depressing at times but there is always hope for redemption, even though it s unclear what, if any, comes You won t be disappointed with Them and I can t wait to read of her books.

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    14. A friend gave me this book when I took my first college position at a community College It s a very insightful book about those we seek to educate.

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    15. For a woman who only lived in Detroit for a few years, it s breathtaking how well she evokes this city Everything feels real to me and that s saying a lot since these characters are so hard to believe, extremely dysfunctional, sociopaths, even crazy Oates is able to get into their skin, totally feeling every terrible thought and terrible deed Yes, it s startlingly violent and as implausible as the characters seem they are true to their actions Oates never flinches, she never explains or judges t [...]

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    16. The first book I read by Joyce Carol Oates was Blonde, a book told from the point of view of Marilyn Monroe I read it in eighth grade Unfortunately, it was extremely violent and sexually graphic, and I was very put off and disturbed by it However, I did notice Oates sparse, emotional prose, and was fascinated by it I ve put quite a few of Oates novels on my to read shelf and have been waiting to read one them was the one that I picked up.My favorite part of the book was the beginning Loretta is [...]

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    17. A startling book in its lack of plot cohesion, but offering some really powerful sections on life, love, and family.

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    18. Having recently picked up a predictable, ambulance chasing fascination with Detroit, post the Mark Binelli Detroit book me and several million others I came to this as an important Detroit Novel Superb Besides its Great American scale and its big bag of gritty themes female disempowerment, racism, poverty, urban breakdown, violence, the American Dream, etc , here are some exceptionally fine portrayals of seduction, lust and love The characters are very much alive and real not so much because the [...]

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    19. I thought it only fair that since I have read a gazillion books in my life time, it would make sense to finally get around to reading Joyce Carol Oates, who has written a gazillion books So I thought I would start with Them , which won the National Book Award in the early 70s Not to be confused with the movie about giant killer ants of the same name Plus, I found this at a local used book store for a dollar and I just couldn t pass up that cover Well, let s just say that a the National Book Awar [...]

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    20. Oh, Joyce Carol Oates, how you confound me I really, really, really want to like your books because they always sound so interesting, but then I start reading them and have to wonder what it is you re smoking when you write them Maybe you write for a higher literary plane than the one I inhabit maybe what you write is your inside joke, laughing as the NY Times and other highly acclaimed book review publications pronounce your latest novel a breathtaking tour de force from a bona fide literary ge [...]

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    21. The sum was less than the whole of its parts.I can t put my finger on what I didn t like about this book I want to say it was boring, but how can a book that includes rape, murder, madness and riots be boring And while I thought the dialogue was really well written, the characters had nothing to say The book felt arbitrary and random So much so, it really did seem like reportage of one family s lives This, for any of our lives, without the overlay of storytelling, becomes just a tedious series o [...]

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    22. I m not really sure what I thought of this book I didn t quite like it, but it was better than just OK I d prefer to give it 2.5 stars Part of this is probably because I read most of it while I was a little out of it over the weekend, due to my poor nonexistent ability to deal with the humidity heat down here I probably owe it a re read someday.Anyway, this is the third book in Oates Wonderland series This one follows members of the Wendall family mom Loretta, daughter Maureen and son Jules in D [...]

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    23. Very close to 5 stars for me A few favorite passages among many She drifted down to the library whenever she was free Growing up and moving away from home was somehow linked in her mind with the library the library at night, with its silence and openness Anything might happen Nothing happened but anything might She stared at these pictures, aware of having failed though she was still young her failure was tied up somehow with her being unable to sleep She would not grow up into a normal woman so [...]

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    24. This overly long book was alternately boring, fascinating, repelling and maddening Ms Oates follows the lives of a family mother, daughter and son living in poverty in urban Detroit in the fifties and sixties Based, according to her, on actual events, the book chronicles the traumatic lives they led, with what, to me at least, is an excess of imaginative reconstruction of nearly every thought these individuals must have had while the events were transpiring Or maybe I should say MIGHT have had, [...]

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    25. I ve been trying to work my way through all of the National Book Award Fiction winners and was glad to have a reason to read this novel.I had a difficult time getting into the book and almost gave up after 30 or so pages, feeling unconnected with any of the characters But I m glad that I held on.The story focuses on a hard scrabble working poor family in Detroit in the 1960s There are 3 characters mother, son, daughter that are generally the focus of the novel, and the focus changes from chapter [...]

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    26. This s a 3rd of a quartet of novels written by Joyce Carol Oates in the 1960s and are based on issues of racism and poverty in Detroit, Michigan I have been reading the Modern Library versions of the first 3 novels The main theme and key question are does being poor necessitate becoming vicious and violent to survive After reading the book I think an affirmative answer is the only one possible Joyce Carol Oates lived in this region for many years, moving to Canada after the 1967 riots The 1967 r [...]

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    27. Joyce Carol Oates is an author I have come to love I start to read one of her books and I cannot stop I fall into her stories, her characters, her narrative This book is no different It is an epic tale of a family plagued by murder, death, spousal beatings, child abuse, prostitution and fire Oh, and a riot This is not even including the dashed hopes, lowered expectations, poverty and general sanity The author gives us a lot of inner dialogue, and I wonder, does she think everyone is insane Is ev [...]

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    28. Them was the first book of Joyce s that I read and oh what a read it was Her writing style is unique and, that is an understatement I read this when I was about 16 or 17 and walked away with psychological nightmares Then, I picked up Wonderland and again fell under her hypnosis I put both books down for a long time and was afraid of them Just looking at them made me quiver But, at about 25 years old I yearned to recapture her dark prose again and reread both.I ve since lost these two books, but [...]

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    29. I struggled through this the way I struggled through Lolita Both are stories based on real life Both are depressing them is 576 pages long depressing, and just about wore me out I d set my sights on reading all four books in Oates Wonderland series I may quit after this one book three.

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    30. This is the book that made me fall in love with Joyce Carol Oates This book follows the course of a family through the generations and was the book that helped me realize that I was doomed to a life like my mother s and my grandmother s unless I started paying attention The cycle of life poorly lived is so clearly detailed The characters are tragic and easily identified just by looking around you in any depressed area They may even be in your own family You don t read Joyce Carol Oates if you wa [...]

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