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Julian Barnes History of the World in 10 and chapters.

1. Julian Barnes
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Julian Patrick Barnes (born 19 January 1946[1] Leicester, England)

he worked as a lexicographer for the Oxford English Dictionary. Subsequently, he worked


as a literary editor and film critic. He now writes full-time.

He has been shortlisted three times for the Man Booker Prize (Flaubert's
Parrot (1984), England, England (1998), and Arthur & George (2005)).

Julian Barnes lectured as a professor for Literature at the European Graduate


School in Saas-Fee, Switzerland.

In 1989 Barnes published A History of the World in 10 Chapters, which was also a nonlinear novel, which uses a variety of writing styles to call into question the perceived
notions of human history and knowledge itself.

He lived in London with his wife, the literary agent Pat Kavanagh, until her death on 20
October 2008. Barnes' most recent book, a non-fiction exploration of the meaning of death
called Nothing to be Frightened of, was published by Jonathan Cape in March 2008 and
was shortlisted for the Duff Cooper Prize.

He has written crime fiction under the pseudonym Dan Kavanagh.

Julian Barnes has written numerous novels, short stories, and essays. He has
also translated a book by French author Alphonse Daudet and a collection of
German cartoons by Volker Kriegel. His writing has earned him considerable
respect as an author who deals with the themes of history, reality, truth and love.

2. About History of the world in 10 and Chapters


- Ten and half chapters consist interlinked short stories and essays. Each
chapter of the book relates a self-contained short story and yet each chapter is
inextricably linked from the rest of the book, through themes, topics, emotions and the
human condition.

It is a look back in time unconventional and amusing

There are all fictional stories, nevertheless referring the history or some
historical events (Starting from forefather Noah through i.e. Cold War,
up to space flight)

Makes book interesting by different techniques of narratives

Different styles (legal documents, essays, short stories, memories)


It is difficult to describe one plot, there are two motives that goes
almost through the story:
a) Motive of Noahs Ark
b) Woodworm

As Postmodernist book:
Elements of postmodernist literature in J. Barnes:
- Intertextuality ( referring to Noahs Ark, Bible, Gerricaults paintings)

- eclecticism (mixture of styles, genres)


- - parody (a case against woodworms)
- black humour (a story about animals on Noahs Ark)
I Chapter:
Noahs Ark
The chapter is written in the first person and, it slowly transpires that it is being told by one of the
passengers on board the Ark, a stowaway who is a woodworm.
It dispels the myths about Noah and his kin. A Woodworm gives also the correct dates and timings
of the events surrounding the great flood, giving us an insight into how and why more than a few
of the worlds spieces didnt make it through the whole voyage e.g. unicorn and the red-haired,
green-eyed simians.

A history of Noah described by a woodworm


Parody of a Noahs story

III chapter:
The Wars of Religion
It is a translation of historical document a transcript of legal
proceedings brought by the inhabitants of the French town of Mamirolle
against those who desecrated and paritially destroyed church and in
particular the bishops seat. The defendants are woodworm who
infested the church and settled down on the holiest place in town.
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Written in a style of legal, oficcial document


Many referrings to the Bible

IV The Survivor
The Survivor tells of a woman who is sick of the world and its temporary situation (explosion in
Chernobyl, cold war). She leaves everything and decides to take a boat and sail off into the sunset.

When she becomes ill her real problems happens. She starts having nightmares in which there are
men in white coats. She tries to trick them or in particular her own mind (as she considers she is
still dreaming).
In this chapter we go into a psyche of the main protagonist and through the whole chapter we try
to figure out which reality is true.
V Shipwreck
This chapter consists of two parts
I tells the harrowing tale of those who were aboard The Medusa when it ran aground. Particularly
the story is focused on a raft and human behavior when people are

in view of the threat . About

the rebellion and difficult choices they have to make e.g. who will be eaten next.
The second part describes The Raft of the Medusa a painting of the scene as those on the raft are
saved. Barnes describes the whole picture and how it was made. He tries to describe what people
see on the painting and contrast this with the real story of the Medusa surfivors.
Parenthesis (1/2)

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