Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Review: tHE hORLA

THE HORLA by Guy de Maupassant
Peter Washington (editor)
Everyman's Library (2008), Hardcover, 416 pages

‘But what is this being, this invisible being who is ruling me?
This unknowable creature, this wanderer from a supernatural race.’ (p.57)

The word Horla means - out there - (from the French ‘hors’ meaning out, and ‘la’ meaning there).

The Horla is a short story by Guy de Maupassant, written in 1887 and tells how an invisible being influences the mind of the narrator.
The narrator writes in his journal the progressive domination of the Horla on his thoughts and actions.

Akaky wants to be another person buying a new cloak: The Cloak by Gogol (1842).
Golyadkin thinks that another person has stolen his identity, and this second person step by step replaces Golyadkin’s life: The Double: a Petersburg Poem by Dostoevsky (1846).
A person discovers another side of himself: Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Stevenson (1886).
At the end Gregor Samsa becomes a beast: The Metamorphosis by Kafka (1915).

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