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Sabato s The Tunnel 1948 resembles Camus The Stranger 1942 , for both are spare, short novels featuring murderer protagonists as first person narrators, men who are profoundly alienated not only from their societies but also from any meaningful personal relationship But the two protagonists are very different from each other too Camus hero Meursault, a shipping clerk, is an unimaginative man alienated from his own emotions Sabato s hero Castel, a well known painter, experiences his emoti Sabato s The Tunnel 1948 resembles Camus The Stranger 1942 , for both are spare, short novels featuring murderer protagonists as first person narrators, men who are profoundly alienated not only from their societies but also from any meaningful personal relationship But the two protagonists are very different from each other too Camus hero Meursault, a shipping clerk, is an unimaginative man alienated from his own emotions Sabato s hero Castel, a well known painter, experiences his emotions intensely but projects them all onto a woman, the only woman he believes who can ever fully understand him Meursault s alienation leads to a murder of indifference, Sabato s to a murder of obsession.The reader watches in growing frustration and horror as Castel poisons what might have been a brief, sweet dalliance with a married woman who notices something in one of his paintings he believed only he and his ideal woman could ever see His relentless, all consuming hunger for her absolute devotion devours each romantic encounter, draining it of joy, and further intensifying his isolation Then one day, that isolation blossoms into crime.This is a fine book about the desperate loneliness of romantic obsession If such an obsession has ever touched your life, you should find this short novel both disturbing and fascinating.So why is it called The Tunnel Sabato and Castel explains this metaphor toward the end of the book it was if the two of us had been living in parallel passageways or tunnels, never knowing that we were moving side by side, like souls in like times, finally to meet before a scene I had painted as a kind of key meant for her alone, as a kind of secret sign that I was there ahead of her and that the passageways finally had joined and the hour of our meeting had comeWhat a stupid illusion that had been that the whole story of the passageways was my own ridiculous invention and that after all there was only one tunnel, dark and solitary mine, the tunnel in which I had spent my childhood, my youth, my entire life. Just as Opaque the Second Time RoundIn The Tunnel, Ernesto Sabato has a mysogonistic, puerile, obsessive, apparently psychopathic murderer tell the reader his every thought about a folie a deux with his victim and its rationale My first time through The Tunnel left me bewildered Of what literary rather than ideological merit is this work For whose edification or amusement is it meant My original conclusion It s a difficult book to be interested in much less like But I picked up on a hint b Just as Opaque the Second Time RoundIn The Tunnel, Ernesto Sabato has a mysogonistic, puerile, obsessive, apparently psychopathic murderer tell the reader his every thought about a folie a deux with his victim and its rationale My first time through The Tunnel left me bewildered Of what literary rather than ideological merit is this work For whose edification or amusement is it meant My original conclusion It s a difficult book to be interested in much less like But I picked up on a hint by another GR reader and found that Sabato was a scientist before he was a writer and had incorporated quantum physics in The Tunnel as a sort of hidden metaphor Indeed there is a short book by Halpern and Carpenter which outlines the way in which the metaphor is meant to work at key points in the book This led me back into The Tunnel for another look Halpern and Carpenter suggest that Sabato followed Borges in his interest in the labyrinthine character of history through which the world changes direction at critical nodes They also point out Borges allusions to alternative and even parallel universes that were of interest to Sabato They contend that Sabato builds on these Borgian tropes to create scenes of discontinuous time in his story.Maybe so But I find the argument of Halpern and Carpenter to be somewhat tendentious But even stipulating their observations, I don t see the point The metaphor, if there, is certainly not central to this tale of murder and psychopathy Of course there are always alternative trajectories for any story, or for any historical reality But the idea of using the collapse of the quantum wavefront as the signal for a decisive turning point seems to me trivial and fatuous.True, the protagonist, Juan Pablo, is continuously analysing his situation in terms of alternative possibilities, as in this internal monologueI constructed an endless series of variations In one I was talkative, witty something in fact I never am in another I was taciturn in still another, sunny and smiling At times, though it seems incredible, I answered rudely, even with ill concealed rage It happened in some of these imaginary meetings that our exchange broke off abruptly because of an absurd irritability on my part, or because I rebuked her, almost crudely, for some comment I found pointless or ill thought outBut this is a symptom of madness not a symbol of impending quantum resolution Even the speaker recognises thatthis damned compulsion to justify everything I do,isn t normalConsequently it seems to me that the metaphor of quantum physics does nothing to explicate Sabato s very dark story Juan Pablo is a misanthrope without any mitigating, not to say redeeming, features The Tunnel, therefore, doesn t get anyinteresting with a possible metaphorical foundation Unless of course sabato s intention was simply to create a sort of quantum uncertainty about this very foundation In any case not terribly stimulating My original review us here Cui bono I have been trying to finish this short novel for weeks But I can only get through 10 pages at a time I ve finally given up I don t get it Is there something beyond an obsessive compulsive folie a deux that I am simply unable to comprehend Someone please explain where I am going wrong El t nel The Tunnel, Ernesto S batoThe Tunnel is a dark, psychological novel, written by Argentine writer Ernesto Sabato, about a deranged traditional painting technique, Juan Pablo Castel, and his obsession with a woman The story s title refers to the symbol for Castel s emotional and physical isolation from society, which becomes increasingly apparent as Castel proceeds to tell from his jail cell the series of events that enabled him to murder the only person capable of understanding him M El t nel The Tunnel, Ernesto S batoThe Tunnel is a dark, psychological novel, written by Argentine writer Ernesto Sabato, about a deranged traditional painting technique, Juan Pablo Castel, and his obsession with a woman The story s title refers to the symbol for Castel s emotional and physical isolation from society, which becomes increasingly apparent as Castel proceeds to tell from his jail cell the series of events that enabled him to murder the only person capable of understanding him Marked by its existential themes, The Tunnel received enthusiastic support from Albert Camus and Graham Greene following its publication in 1948 20081386 174 9644482956 201387 160 9789649234816 It was just about the stroke of dawn, lilacs started to bloom, the birds were singing along, the orchestra was about to embark on, I got up early and decided to plunge myself in books, I d a few options The Tunnel, Beauty and Sadness, and Requiem A hallucination, I chose The Tunnel, for from excerpts of the book, it occurred to be an existential tale of an account of relationship of an artist Juan Pablo Castel with Maria Iribarne whom he murdered, I was listening to Shine on your crazy Diamon It was just about the stroke of dawn, lilacs started to bloom, the birds were singing along, the orchestra was about to embark on, I got up early and decided to plunge myself in books, I d a few options The Tunnel, Beauty and Sadness, and Requiem A hallucination, I chose The Tunnel, for from excerpts of the book, it occurred to be an existential tale of an account of relationship of an artist Juan Pablo Castel with Maria Iribarne whom he murdered, I was listening to Shine on your crazy DiamondbyPink Floyd, the starting lines It should be sufficient to say that I am Juan Pablo Castel, the painter who killed Maria Iribarne I imagine that the trial is still in everyone s mind and that no further information about myself is necessary with the music of Pink Floyd were creating enthralling atmosphere which caught me off guard to observe that how effortlessly the author has used simplicity to convey the most profound and honest conviction by narrator, that was the very first glimpse of finesse, of the author, which only gets amplified in subsequent pages It s about recollection of actions of Castel from a prison cell, however it s neither an apology for the actions which his insanity caused him to do, nor is it a rational explanation of them Juan Pablo Castel, the first person narrator of the book, paints Motherhoodwhich has a remote scene framed in a window in the upper let corner of canvas an empty beach and a solitary woman looking at the sea, gets preoccupied with a woman who seems to be interesting in this scene, of a window, which everyone ignores, the scene signifies absolute nostalgic loneliness, which is profound than solitude, for solitude is often self desired and rewarding at times as one gets chance to look aside form the distractions world offer us, to ponder upon your insignificant self and to nurture it with amusements you enjoy perhaps to refuel yourself, while the wistful loneliness is depressing as you feel isolated from the world and it seems to fall apart in front of your very eyes but all you could do is just to stare meekly at it the narrator feels a profound bond with her, a woman who can see into his soul and capable of understanding the emotion behind his artistic creation, for she probably feels the same isolation from the world as the narrator does, since the people, who are waking by, seem to be non existent to her this realization thoroughly captures his mind and he becomes obsessed with her, the kind of realization which brings along a injuring fear and an anguish at the same time to feel that there are others like you as well you re not absurd alone, a desire to meet those people and a trepidation to lose all your notions about your existence The narrator stalks her and tries different probable combinations to bring his chances of meeting her from null to desirable outcome, he keeps on mediating about these combinations to insanity and always tries to comfort himself when the fear of getting it altogether wrong strikes him by carefully deliberating each of them It isn t that I don t reason things Just the opposite my mind never stops But think of a captain who is constantly charting its position, meticulously following a course towards an objective But also imagine that he does not know why is sailing toward itSabato captures the intensity of passions run into uncharted passages where love promises not tranquillity but danger, Juan Pablo manages to meet Maria, their relationship starts to bloom but it is not usual fairy types of bonds, for it is one of those crippling one which eventually turns out to be obsession wherein jealously gradually takes over infatuation as is the fate of love generally, for the dangers it holds only permeate with time The inability to control human passion, precisely bounded, here comes across not as melodrama but as icy documentaryTheI thought about it, thereceptive I became to the idea of accepting her love without condition, and theterrified I became of being left with nothing, absolutely nothing From the terror was germinating and flowering the kind of humility possessed only by persons who have no choice This narrative of the book is meticulously condensed as the book is divided into small chapters which contain sparse and succinct sentences which makes them easy to decipher, at the same time the narrative doesn t leave its profoundness to captivate the reader about obsessions and struggles of the narrator The nightmares of Juan Pablo, in which he turns to a man size bird, reflects the deep scuffles in consciousness to ascertain existence of a man Sabato mocks about idiosyncrasies of life using satirical elements, the deadpan description of a cocktail party filled with psychoanalysts, the portrayal of life of elites wherein redundant conversations fill the intellectual circles, are absolutely bang on, his commentary over vanity is honest and chilling, for human nature is corrupted and man always delude himselfI do not comment on vanity As far as I know, no human is devoid of this formidable motivation for Human Progress People make me laugh when they talk about the modesty of an Einstein, or someone of his kind My answer to them is that it is easy to be modest when you are famous That is appear to me modestThis compelling book drills deeper into the dark abyss of human soul like The Outsider by Albert Camus, the dark canvas of tortured human soul sketched by Sabato wherein the rules governing despair are so closely examined that the entire enterprise of living or thinking seems deeply absurd, wherein man constantly sees faults in the people he meets or observes walking along the streets of the city, whose distrust of human nature is evident in the jealousy and insecurity towards seemingly most profound relationships according to Albert Camus, the only philosophical problem in the life was suicide, for its the greatest choice for a man in this absurd world, to choose whether or not life is worth living is to answer the very question of existence, Camus sees this question of suicide as a natural response to an underlying premise, namely that life is absurd in its very nature, for it s absurd to continually seek meaning in life when there is none S bato s narrator faces the existential dilemma with similar existential choices at his disposal, we don t see any sign of regret in Castel over his act of murder as he reflects on his actions in prison which clearly shows influence of Dostoevsky and Kafka as their characters, who create havoc, who helped society see the soul of man who carried vengeance in his heart, yet maintained a love for mankind, or probably anti heroes never show any sign of remorse over their deeds since their acts are existential choices at their disposal one could easily decipher that Juan Pablo is already a prisoner well before he is being put in prison, for he is captive of his wistful loneliness, of his delusions and paranoia which eventually leads him to murder Maria, who he thinks understands him best, out of utter jealously, which is the outcome of his interminable existential struggle You know I was going to review this book but then it occurred to me that I would never know if you have read my review I mean yes, I do get likes but suppose people are liking them without reading them Of course, why would anyone do that Two possibilities seem to suggest themselves either they want to make a fool of me by making me keep writing reviews that no one reads or to distract me from something Of course, that in itself calls for a mass conspiracy because so many people from so man You know I was going to review this book but then it occurred to me that I would never know if you have read my review I mean yes, I do get likes but suppose people are liking them without reading them Of course, why would anyone do that Two possibilities seem to suggest themselves either they want to make a fool of me by making me keep writing reviews that no one reads or to distract me from something Of course, that in itself calls for a mass conspiracy because so many people from so many countries will be liking my reviews unless of course, it is one person with many fake accounts Now that I think about it the possibility seems very real The above is how our protagonist might have started a review But now to proper review I don t know if it can be defined that way but all art whether it be painting, writing, singing etc, all art forms seems to be tools, of communication of communicating in superior ways It is like that teenager boy writing poems to his sweat heart sort of thing or making albums, quoting great poets when one doesn t feel gifted oneself because our normal everyday language isn t enough to express what we feel.But what about artists What yearnings must they have in themselves to make it their profession to develop those tools to be on constant look out, at just the right word, phrase, color etc Why should MB write, leave alone his manuscript of Master and Margarita leave alone keep them knowing that they are as good as their death warrant Manuscripts don t burn one hears in the answer but why don t they Is it that they live in constant fear of being misunderstood like Kafka was Perhaps getting the message right in itself not enough, there must also need be the person who can understand the message And thus, Nabokov s irritation at wrong interpretations of his works and Van Gogh s sorrow, who though created most beautiful paintings, never found a pair of eyes in which that beauty is reflected Perhaps that is why artists seek posterity and immortality to carry to their death bed the hope that what they have to say will be one day be heard in just the way they wanted The protagonist in the Invitation to a Beheading by Nabokov gives his writings to his executioners in desperation and asks them not to destroy them as long as he is alive so that he could at least have a theoretical chance of finding a reader.So, is it for that theoretical chance of finding someone who will understand him that keeps the artist going It seems to be true in the case of Juan Pablo, our protagonist here, for whom the whole life was like a dark tunnel yes that explains the title where he lived in solitude because, as he puts it, no one understood him The trouble begins when he finds a woman does understand him And he discovers that he has a lotto say than that single painting She wants that too because the need for understanding is mutual It doesn t matter who paints and who reflects Only our guy can t have enough his overt thinking, over analytical, pathological brain can t believe his good fortune Like Anna Karenina, he needs constant assurances of her fidelity as is often the case of those who fell in love when they had long given up on any chance of finding it Like her, he too dwells over suicide but rather prefers killing his girlfriend.Camus commissioned its publishing and the narrator here too finds himself a stranger in his world but his solitude because he is a nihilist but rather because of his misanthropy It also shows similarity to Lolita in that Juan Pable might be putting his own version and suppressing the voice of his victim If you want to foreground a sociopath misogynist stalker s sense of urban isolation and alienation against a woman s prolonged emotional and physical abuse at the hands of the same person and call it existentialist literature, your choice Just don t expect me to appreciate it. The Tunnel by Sabato, inspired by Dostoevsky and Kafka, is not just an intriguing novel but also an important existential classic It cannot be totally denied that there are some similarities between Castel of this novel and Meursault from The Stranger but Castel is not too nihilistic in his views The heart of Castel might have been frozen, but there was a drop or two of love just enough to feed the birds.Solitude is often thought of as something self warranted Sometimes, even a man who buil The Tunnel by Sabato, inspired by Dostoevsky and Kafka, is not just an intriguing novel but also an important existential classic It cannot be totally denied that there are some similarities between Castel of this novel and Meursault from The Stranger but Castel is not too nihilistic in his views The heart of Castel might have been frozen, but there was a drop or two of love just enough to feed the birds.Solitude is often thought of as something self warranted Sometimes, even a man who built his own fortress of solitude from which he can watch and sneer at others, waits eagerly for someone to breach the wall that confines him God or Man Solitude is not indestructible.Castel doesn t want to be judged but to be understood That s why Castel, having ended up in the prison cell, narrates the events that changed his life He was oblivious of all human sorrows in his tunnel of solitude There were no intruders His journey inside his tunnel has always been unobtrusive, with occasional, suspicious sneaks from the outside and a faint hope of meeting someone inside from the outside Slowly, the walls keep narrowing in Darkness keeps creeping in Such was the life of Castel Usually that feeling of being alone in the world is accompanied by a condescending sense of superiority I scorn all humankind people around me seem vile, sordid, stupid, greedy, gross, niggardly I do not fear solitude it is almost Olympian He was free but incomplete and waiting anxiously for someone or a guiding light Along came a lovely being, ravaging his solitude and denting his vanity After gazing from the outside for a while at the tunnel wall of painting Mar a viewing Castel s painting of Motherhood as shown below , Mar a left without a word There was a strange, distant, silent sea which beckoned to them and which would sweep him away in the name of love Here is Castel, reflecting on his past and a love affair which otherwise would have lasted, had he not killed the only person who would understand him What went wrong Who wronged their love which could have otherwise been beautiful, and maybe, everlasting It also happens that when we have reached the limits of despair that precede suicide, when we have exhausted the inventory of every evil and reached the point where evil is invincible, then any sign of goodness, however infinitesimal, becomes momentous, and we grasp for it as we would claw for a tree root to keep from hurtling into an abyss But soon, the goodness seemed not enough His perverse predictions deceived him His syllogisms had become sinful delusions His absurd questions made him confront his love His fractured love metamorphosed him into a heartless murderer It is not solitude any buta sordid museum of shameHere is he,animated by the faint hope that someone will understand him even if it is only one person , giving an impartial account of the events which ensued from his love affair What I learned from this novel is that if you look intensely and soulfully at a painting in a gallery and the artist himself happens to see you doing it and conceives the notion that you and only you alone have perceived the true great meaning of this work you might find yourself cajoled, inveigled, drawn in, stalked obsessively, obsessed over night and day, belittled, berated, bewildered, bamboozled, brutalised and finally stabbed and killed in a blizzard of male rage in just exactly the same w What I learned from this novel is that if you look intensely and soulfully at a painting in a gallery and the artist himself happens to see you doing it and conceives the notion that you and only you alone have perceived the true great meaning of this work you might find yourself cajoled, inveigled, drawn in, stalked obsessively, obsessed over night and day, belittled, berated, bewildered, bamboozled, brutalised and finally stabbed and killed in a blizzard of male rage in just exactly the same way these ghastly things are done in any old vulgar sex crime you might see on Forensic Files or in the pages of your local tabloid, and so the moral is clear if out of the corner of your eye you do see the famous artist looking at you looking, you should beat it out of there as fast as your little feet can carry you and don t look back until you re back behind double locked doors, because he might, just might, be the protagonist of an existential novel from the 1940s (Download Kindle) ⚻ El túnel ¸ Breve e intensa novela publicada en , este logrado fruto de la denominada literatura existencial le dio a su autor un reconocimiento que traspas las fronteras nacionales Para quien todav a no la ley , El t nel es la mejor introducci n al universo prodigioso de Ernesto S bato para quien la conoce, un cl sico de las letras del continente, una historia sobre el drama del hombre arrojado en el sinsentido m s doloroso la conciencia de la nada El narrador describe una historia de amor y muerte en la que muestra la soledad del individuo contempor neo No est n ausentes de esta trama policial y de suspenso, la locura y la incre ble reflexi n del protagonista, el pintor Juan Pablo Castel, debati ndose por comprender las causas que lo arrastraron a matar a la mujer que amaba, Mar a Iribarne, y que era su nica v a de salvaci n En este alucinante drama de la vida interior, seres intrincados en la bestial b squeda de comprensi n ceden a la mentira, la hipocres a y los celos desmedidos hasta el crimen m s inexplicable Aventura amorosa, aventura on rica, aventura del ser que dan testimonio de un asesinato, de cierta memoria culpable y de una valiente introspecci n T cnicamente perfecta y de lectura apasionante, El t nel excede el negativismo cido de Sartre y la fren tica huida hacia el vac o que plantea El extranjero de Camus, pero tiene de esos dos maestros literarios la impronta genial que hace de la escritura una radiograf a del alma atormentada Really wanted to nail this in one sitting, but still managed it in two, wow , this still retains it s power to shock all these years later, disturbing and even funny, Sabato features possibly the most chilling ending I have come across to date Narrated by an artist in jail that being Juan Pablo Castel who practically goes about stalking a woman named Maria after he spots her eying one of his canvases in a gallery From this moment on he forces his way into her life, learning she has a blind hu Really wanted to nail this in one sitting, but still managed it in two, wow , this still retains it s power to shock all these years later, disturbing and even funny, Sabato features possibly the most chilling ending I have come across to date Narrated by an artist in jail that being Juan Pablo Castel who practically goes about stalking a woman named Maria after he spots her eying one of his canvases in a gallery From this moment on he forces his way into her life, learning she has a blind husband, and ex lovers drives him deranged with jealous envy A perverse effect of the candour in Castel s retrospective account is that it almost makes you forget he s a murderer, believing this is an ordinary man, just telling a story It wasn t always uncomfortable, and has some darkly humorous moments throughout The lurking horror of his crime is all thegross for its subtlety, that s what makes El T nel so darn chilling A fantastic psychological short novel Missing out on top marks though because I still felt it s story somehow seemed unbalanced