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Rein Gold


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About the Author

Elfriede Jelinek, who was born in 1946 and grew up in Vienna, now lives in Vienna and Munich. She has received numerous awards for her literary works, which include not only novels but also plays, poetry, essays, translations, radio plays, screenplays and opera librettos. Her awards include the Georg Buchner Prize and the Franz Kafka Prize for Literature. She was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2004 for her 'musical flow of voices and counter-voices in novels and plays that, with extraordinary linguistic zeal, reveal the absurdity of society's cliches and their subjugating power'.


'Jelinek's work is brave, adventurous, witty, antagonistic and devastatingly right about the sorriness of human existence, and her contempt is expressed with surprising chirpiness: it's a wild ride.' - Guardian

'Translated with verve by Gitta Honegger, [rein GOLD] becomes a series of monologues without paragraph breaks: a frequent discordant assault on the senses. A visceral challenge to lazy and pernicious consumerism [...] Brunnhilde and Wotan may have the names of gods, but they play down and dirty, their lengthy slanging match ripe with expletives and references to popular culture and Marxist and anarchist theory, the most obvious being Pierre-Joseph Proudhon's slogan "Property is theft." [...] Jelinek's critique is simultaneously timely and timeless, as Brunnhilde and Wotan's arguments and digressions map capitalism's progression.' - Catherine Taylor, Financial Times

'The liveliness of Jelinek's language (in Gitta Honegger's translation, which deftly renders all manner of wordplay) is undeniable... rein GOLD is highly evocative of the endless onward stagger of late capitalism' - Martin Herbert, ArtReview

'Jelinek's prose and arguments are undoubtedly masterful; she is, despite the never-ending controversy around her boundary-breaking work, rightfully regarded as one of the greatest living authors writing in German. Honegger's translation is vivid and equally as skilled [...] rein GOLD is not a comfortable read, but really, given the subject matter, should it be? Wagner is not especially comfortable to sit through either, but you don't go to see his Ring Cycle for a light, airy performance. You go to see and hear a work of genius. Important literature is rarely easily digestible.' - Ella Fox Martens, Soft Punk

'In rein GOLD, Jelinek reimagines the characters of Brunnhilde and Wotan from Wagner's Ring cycle and transposes them into the context of modernity. She delivers an impassioned expose of the discontents of capitalism. Her musical thought is interwoven with myth, politics, and Wagnerian motifs. Gitta Honegger's excellent translation allows us to experience the intense flow of her characters' streams of consciousness entangled in greed and alienation.' - Xiaolu Guo, author of A Lover's Discourse

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