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the Complete Review
the complete review - fiction

La part de l'autre

Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt

[an overview of the reviews and critical reactions]

general information | review summaries | review and reception notes | links | about the author

To purchase La part de l'autre

Title: La part de l'autre
Author: Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt
Genre: Novel
Written: 2001
Length: 503 pages
Original in: French
Availability: La part de l'autre - France
Adolf H. Zwei Leben - Deutschland
  • La part de l'autre has not yet been translated into English
  • Includes a 'Journal La part de l'autre Automne 2000 - Eté 2001' by Schmitt as an afterword, a writing-journal accompanying the text

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Why we haven't reviewed it yet:

Have had a copy for years, and the idea sounds intriguing but the lukewarm reviews and the commitment (500 pages) have kept us away

Chances that we will review it:

Fairly slim, but we might get to it

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Review Summaries
Source Rating Date Reviewer
The Economist . 10/11/2001 .
NZZ F 19/1/2008 Thomas Laux

  From the Reviews:
  • "This is not the first time that Mr Schmitt has tried to fill in the blanks left by orthodox versions of history. Here, though, the device seems forced. Caught up in Hitler's particular psychology, Mr Schmitt fails to engage satisfactorily with the question of the nature of evil. Only one character identifies the difference between "ordinary" evil and the evil of a fanatical dictator, capable of killing millions. Potentially interesting ideas -- for instance that Hitler became an anti-Semite only out of political opportunism -- are introduced tentatively, under the cover of novelistic licence." - The Economist

  • "Die fiktive Hitler-Figur wird durch die Realität der historischen Figur komplett überlagert und gerät zur artifiziellen Hypostasierung; die Monstrosität des echten Hitler lässt sich schlechterdings nicht relativieren, was eben auch ein rezeptionelles Problem der Zumutbarkeit ist. (...) (D)as alles wirkt bis ins Übermass konstruiert, verkitscht und verschwurbelt. Sublimierung ist Schmitts Sache nun gewiss nicht." - Thomas Laux, Neue Zürcher Zeitung

Please note that these ratings solely represent the complete review's biased interpretation and subjective opinion of the actual reviews and do not claim to accurately reflect or represent the views of the reviewers. Similarly the illustrative quotes chosen here are merely those the complete review subjectively believes represent the tenor and judgment of the review as a whole. We acknowledge (and remind and warn you) that they may, in fact, be entirely unrepresentative of the actual reviews by any other measure.

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Notes about the Reviews
and the Book's Reception

       Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt's La part de l'autre is an alternate-history, imagining a Hitler who was accepted at the Viennese art academy (and hence pursued a different life than the one he actually did) -- a minute which changed the course of the world, as the first chapter-heading has it.
       It doesn't seem to have made too much of a lasting impression, and the first reactions of the German translation (2008) were positively hostile.

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La part de l'autre: Reviews: Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt: Other books by Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt under review: Other books of interest under review:

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About the Author:

       French playwright and author Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt was born in 1960.

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