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Disgrace by J M Coetzee (224pp)


Set in post-apartheid South Africa, J. M. Coetzee’s searing novel tells the story of David Lurie, a twice divorced, 52-year-old professor of communications and Romantic Poetry at Cape Technical University. Lurie believes he has created a comfortable, if somewhat passionless, life for himself. He lives within his financial and emotional means. Though his position at the university has been reduced, he teaches his classes dutifully; and while age has diminished his attractiveness, weekly visits to a prostitute satisfy his sexual needs. He considers himself happy. But when Lurie seduces one of his students, he sets in motion a chain of events that will shatter his complacency and leave him utterly disgraced.



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  • Laneda

    One of the best discussions I've heard within this group. I learned something valuable from every one of the great variety of observations made about the
    book, whether I agreed or not. Thanks to the group for giving me an even deeper appreciation for "Disgrace".

    July 2, 2014

  • Meera

    IMDB link to the documentary about South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Committee. It appears to be available on Hulu. This is the one I saw several years ago, though I'm sure there are many other docus on this topic.
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0236447/

    July 1, 2014

    • Peter

      Thank you Meera. I shall look at it and see if it's the same one I watched some years ago. Interesting subject.....

      July 1, 2014

  • Julia R.

    The location was a little hot and loud, but our group was wonderful. Great insights, courteous manners, all around fun group.

    June 27, 2014

  • Peter

    A truly absorbing and fascinating book. Beautifully, if sparsely, written. Provoked lively and thoughtful discussion.

    June 27, 2014

  • Julia R.

    I was so glad to have finally made a discussion. what a great group, wonderful insights. Thank you all.

    June 26, 2014

  • JT

    Very sorry to miss can't get there on time.

    June 26, 2014

  • Clay W.

    Sorry to miss -- unexpected work thing.

    June 26, 2014

  • Elizabeth

    I have definitely been looking forward to this but haven't gotten that far into the book yet.. Not sure if I should just try and catch the next one?

    June 26, 2014

    • Peter

      Elizabeth, you are welcome to join us anyway. Not everyone always has the time to read the book right through.

      June 26, 2014

    • Elizabeth

      Ok thanks! I appreciate you letting me know. Some book clubs aren't alright with it.

      June 26, 2014

  • Polly

    I also won't be able to make it Thursday. See you all next month!

    June 24, 2014

    • Polly

      Well, if there's a downpour tonight my outdoor activity will be impossible, in which case I'll see you all for book club.

      2 · June 26, 2014

    • Peter

      Like all good Texans, I always have my fingers crossed for a downpour.

      June 26, 2014

  • Susan G.

    Alas, will be celebrating the 10th anniversary and cd Release party of legendary Bump Band, headed by the legend Ian Mclagan (formerly of Faces) at Luckys lounge. Book was very good. So glad I was introduced to this wonderful writer.

    June 23, 2014

    • Peter

      So sorry that you won't be able to join us. We shall miss you! Have fun with Mr McLaglan and the music from his new album. See you next time.

      June 24, 2014

  • Jane

    I still won't be able to meet. Going to a co-worker's going away happy hour this Thur. Almost finished with Disgrace--a thought-provoking and interesting read. Hope to make it next time!

    June 23, 2014

  • JT

    Great book, looking forward to discussing it.

    June 23, 2014

  • Laneda

    I just took a look at bookdrum dot com. I guess maybe McCarthy and Coetzee both read Yeats. I have a feeling I will be spending a lot of time at bookdrum. Thanks to Andy.

    June 22, 2014

  • Laneda

    Toward the end of the book, David observes "No country, this, for old men". I wonder if Cormac McCarthy had read "Disgrace". Or is his title "No Country For Old Men" just a coincidence?

    June 22, 2014

  • Meera

    Peter : I'm good with any option except same place + same time. Even exiting on Barton Springs is impractical on Blues days.

    June 22, 2014

  • Andy

    One review observes that Coetzee describes a South Africa that has moved from "a brutal tyranny to a brutal anarchy. "
    Another points out that Byron, the central literary figure in Lurie's mind during the story, "had a relentless sexual appetite. His hundreds of conquests included men, underage girls, and his half-sister."
    At bookdrum dot com, there is a guide of sorts to the numerous books, poetry, historical and mythological figures and so forth which appear in "Disgrace"

    1 · June 22, 2014

  • Laneda

    I would not mind if this discussion were moved to July 2. The Austin Java on Parkway and Lamar has a nice private meeting area. There is no charge if you don't reserve the room for a single group. I've found that my poetry group does not suffer at all from the presence of a very few other customers who find their way to that back room. I don't know about Wednesday availability there. And I've heard parking can be a problem sometimes. One nice thing about it is that they don't close early like the Barton Springs Austin Java sometimes does.

    1 · June 21, 2014

  • Jane

    I forgot about Blues on the Green on the same night and won't be able to meet on Wed. Have plans this Tue too.

    June 21, 2014

  • Susan G.

    You might be able to get Mangia pizza where Christine meets. I'm available only Tuesday 6/24. It was a great book. Have a couple of his other ones ordered. Shinyribs are great and Blues on the Green is fun if you dont mind getting there early.

    June 21, 2014

  • Laneda

    I absolutely love this book. I've read Coetzee before a million or so years ago. I have a standing ride so don't have to worry about parking, but I will be happy to go to any venue that seems more parking friendly.

    June 21, 2014

  • Rosanne J.

    I agree with Susan about the parking. Everett and I will be out of town, but you guys would do well to change the meeting night.....you cannot imagine the crowd of people who start showing up at six o'clock.

    June 20, 2014

  • Susan G.

    It's Blues on the Green Night for the meeting. Parking will be non existent.

    June 20, 2014

  • Jane

    Just started reading a library copy and it's fascinating. Look forward to discussing it with this group!

    June 9, 2014

    • Peter

      It's wonderful subject matter and he is an exceptional writer. It's my first time reading Coetzee - long overdue.

      1 · June 9, 2014

  • Meera

    I've read it before, and I'll be happy to read it again. Particularly since I get to discuss with this group!

    May 23, 2014

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