The Quest for Christa T

The Quest for Christa T

Paperback - 1979
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When The Quest for Christa T. was first published in East Germany ten years ago, there was an immediate storm: bookshops in East Berlin were given instructions to sell it only to well-known customers professionally involved in literary matters; at the annual meeting of East German Writers Conference, Mrs Wolf's new book was condemmed. Yet the novel has nothing eplicity to do with politics.

Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1979, c1970.
Edition: 1st Farrar, Straus and Giroux pbk. ed.
ISBN: 9780374515348
Characteristics: 185 p. ; 21 cm.
Additional Contributors: Middleton, Christopher 1926-


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manoush May 26, 2015

A slim, readable but very deep and elusive novel. The narrative style demands focused attention; it's the sort of writing that's very clear and simple on the surface but has many layers. The storyline is minimal: a woman recalls her deceased friend, Christa T., who died young and was an exceptional human being. The narrator tries to assemble a portrait of Christa T. out of fragments, and both the writing and the portrait are themselves fragmentary and elusive. Though she was an 'ordinary' schoolteacher and wife of a veterinarian, Christa T. had an extraordinary spirit. A woman of insight, constant striving, and imagination, she always tried to transcend the ordinary and access deeper dimensions of experience. The most important thing about her, says the narrator, is that "she had a vision of herself." She lived her short life constantly attempting to be herself and not succumbing to the givens of existence.


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