Free kindle book and epub digitized and proofread by Project Gutenberg. Van Oudijck is the commissioner of an East Javanese residency of the Dutch East Indies. Eerie, lush, psychologically acute, this Dutch masterpiece from (in a fine new translation by Paul Vincent) is one of the great novels of the.

Author: Voshakar Mikara
Country: Laos
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Medical
Published (Last): 21 July 2011
Pages: 442
PDF File Size: 9.33 Mb
ePub File Size: 18.60 Mb
ISBN: 796-9-86781-260-7
Downloads: 89346
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Yozshunos

In the many journalistic serials he wrote about his life in the South during the first decade of the twentieth century, he recreated himself as a wanderer, who experienced forcw intimate and ideal friendship with a young Italian businessman named Orlando.

With an astounding psychological insight and much empathy, Couperus describes how his characters, each in their own way, start looking for a new meaning in their lives, new relationships with each other.

She has no direct involvement in Van Oudijck’s domestic dramas, but offers an outsider’s perspective on those, and a different perspective on the challenges facing the Dutch in Java.

Couperus had extensive experience of Java and of loyis Netherlands Indies’ society and civil service, and everything from his descriptions of the small town and rural landscapes to his analysis of the colonial bureaucracy couperuz conviction.

He commits violence on ordinary syntax and idiom, and always appears to do so with an almost irritating nonchalance. He wrote The hidden forceone of his masterpieces, in only a few months, during a visit to his sister and her husband, who was a commissioner in Pasuruan on East Java.

Why do we bring all the paraphernalia of our costly civilization with us, considering that it will never last?

The Hidden Force

Please send a request for log in data here. Each one of them develops into the symbol of a state of mind, an attitude towards the forve.

The Hidden Force is a tragedy of colonialism essentially comtemporary with, and fully comparable to, the work of Joseph Conrad Bookworld. He merely felt, with that vague good nature that had settled on the entire family. Couperus does occasionally get carried away, and a few of the ideas stray a bit too far, but his rich characterisation and the clever way he goes at presenting colonial degeneracy make The Hidden Force well worthwhile.


Couperus began his literary career with the novel Eline Vere which is set in The Hague. Nor has he an eye for local culture and traditions.

The tensions this produces steadily mount, to be brought to a head by the haunting of the house, which drives everyone except the fogce commissioner away. But it takes a lot for her to finally complain: In The Hidden Force the decline and fall of the Dutch resident Van Oudyck is caused by his inability to see further than his own Western rationalism.

For the colony, which he wants to bring to a higher level.

This could be hiddenn problem for rationalist modern readers, but nothing too critical rests on these phenomena, which though not explicable remain largely isolated. The cultures remain irreconcilable, the colonial experiment doomed to failure. Forcr shows some of the cost to the local population, as the resident must also deal with the much-admired local nobility which is also tending towards degeneracy, helped along by alcoholism and a gambling habitbut it’s the failure of the colonialists themselves that is central.

The hidden force is an enthralling story about the misunderstandings and incomprehension between cultures, as well as between close relatives. The Hidden Force is set in Java aroundand hideen around the family of Van Oudijck, the resident essentially the coupefus in charge for the district of Labuwangi in the Dutch colony.

He is also oblivious to what is happening in his own household. But even in the resolution there are some nice touches, the catastrophe not quite complete but tied together well. He is, however, oblivious to the “hidden forces” of Java, dismissing the mysticism of local prince Sunario as fanaticism.

The Hidden Force – Louis Couperus

A masterly novel about decay. The Hidden Force is also much more than a book about the chasm between white Westerners and warm-blooded Orientals. But Couperus doesn’t go too far overboard with the supernatural and for the most part it is a believable touch, as the locals are also very superstitious.


Couperus was married to his cousin, who helped him with his work and kept him company on his trips, but his work is full of undisguised homosexual emotions, especially in his novels that are set in Antiquity, like the madly decadent The mountain of light and The comedians Louis Couperus The Hidden Force. One is of a supernatural variety: The other is concealed, magical and mysterious. Louis Couperus spent much of his younger life in the Dutch East Indies modern Indonesiaand many of his novels and stories are set either here, or in The Hague where he was born, though his work also contains impressions of Italy, Africa and China, the fruits of his tireless….

The Hidden Force – Wikipedia

Why don’t we live in a cool bamboo hut, sleep on a mat, dress in a kain pandjang and a chintz kabaaiwith a scarf over your shoulders and a flower in our hair? Addy did not seem to possess a modicum of intellect or imagination, and was incapable of uniting two ideas into one composite thought. As a backdrop to his dramatic story about the demise of commissioner Van Oudijck, he quite literally used his own direct environment, the small community of Dutchmen in a far corner of the colony, but in the novel, that stuffy world acquires a deep, existential resonance that is present throughout his work: The other main character is Eva, the wife of the residency’s secretary.

Van Oudijck; unfortunately, Doddy fell for him at a very tender age and has pretty much wasted any opportunity she might have had such as going to school back in the Netherlands in pining for him. The “tropical sex” was controversial in the Netherlands forcr but is not at all explicit by modern standards. In the original Dutch, Couperus’s unorthodox syntax is replete with neologisms. Addy gets around, too, and certainly seems to have met his ideal match in Mrs.

No Comments

Categories: Finance