Thursday, May 14, 2009

Imre Kertesz on his concenration camp experience

Nobel Laureate Imre Kertesz recounts in an interview with Le Nouvel Observateur his experience in concentration camp.
As a child I knew nothing outside the totalitarian regime. When I returned to Hungary, I didn't find it too hard to understand what was going on there. I saw how people were turned into cogs in the machine. The signs were identical. In 1956 I saw the Uprising in Budapest. You don't intellectualise this sort of thing, you just live it. Everything was a lie, the whole world was a lie. But most of the time you were clear-headed in the midst of absurdity. I felt as if my identity was deformed, as if I'd lost my normality. But I was never able to explain it. I asked myself if my 'anomaly' had become normal. Or whether I had become someone else."

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