Susan Taubes’s fiction is animated by an unbearable awareness of death. Her first and only novel,Divorcing(1969), had the working titleTo America and Back in a Coffin. (An apt title, but deemed unmarketable and rejected by her publishers.) Like her contemporary Ingeborg Bachmann, Taubes’s fiction transposes existential mysteries with aesthetic ones. (There are other similarities between the pair: both published only one novel; both novels feature a love interest named Ivan; neither writer would live to see fifty.) Long out of print,Divorcing本月最终将被Nyrb经典重新发行。Taubes的Fearhortened Oeuvre-这部小说，一个未发表的新婚族，少数故事 - 提供一系列正式的强制，镜像内向崩溃的状态。小说似乎为她自己的脆弱性而言。一个终身抑郁症，她在几周之后夺走了自己的生命Divorcing发表了。她亲密的朋友苏珊·桑塔格稍后建议这是休肯纳的纽约时报review that finally pushed Taubes over the edge. “Lady novelists have always claimed the privilege of transcending mere plausibilities,” he’d written. Sontag herself would identify the body.
主角Divorcing, Sophie Blind, an academic and novelist, may or may not be alive. “I died on a Tuesday afternoon, struck by a car as I was crossing Avenue George V,” she tells us early in the novel. She is in Paris with her lover. Her charmless marriage to Ezra, a cruel and charismatic intellectual, awaits her in New York City. Her death seems less biological fact than act of imaginative liberation, the pulled escape hatch of a highly pressurized consciousness: “My body growing enormous, its thousands of trillions of cells suddenly set free, spread, speeded, pressed jubilant, rushing to the seven gates of Paris.” As a narrator, she inhabits a kind of third space, quantum uncertainty, neither living nor dead, neither present nor past.
The novel’s first half is a study of the Blinds’ failed marriage, a tilting relationship freighted with years of deception and three precocious children. Taubes has created an unctuous, carnal, brilliant, despicable foil in Ezra. (In his preface, David Rieff writes, “For those who remember him, or have read the many recollections that have been written about him, the portrait of Ezra is an uncannily accurate description of [Susan’s husband] Jacob Taubes.”) His pettiness and bullying are indexed with excruciating clarity: