By Josef Hirsal

Winner of the 1998 PEN heart united states West Award for translation

Josef Hirsal's experimental novel is a Dada-like romp during the lifetime of a tender guy born right into a Bohemian peasant kinfolk. instructed in 5 elements, A Bohemian early life starts off with a notice to the clever, strikes directly to the textual content, maintains with notes and with notes to the notice, and ends with a notice at the notes to the notes.

More than simply a tongue-in-cheek parody of a literary memoir, A Bohemian early life is a glimpse of the 1st Czechoslovak Republic as visible in the course of the eyes of a tender peasant from the provinces. Abounding in intimate details--the manners of a servant woman, the behavior of town gay, the sounds of well known tune; the best way humans consume in wartime--Hirsal's novel is a wrenching and hilarious story of a tender man's emotional and sexual awakening.

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Additional resources for A Bohemian Youth (Writings from an Unbound Europe)

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He became quite well known himself and spent part of his professional life in Russia.

3 The section of it that came to us was quite small, but it had a pond and was rich in mushrooms. 32. 1 33. It was a profession in which he made quite a name for himself. Bandmasters from far and wide in­ vited him to play with them: Fisera from Novy Bydzov, Sperk from Stare Smrkovice, Ort from Stary Bydzov, Koubek from Vysoke Veseli, Rulf from Lazne Belohrad, etc. 3 Karel Vacek himself came to see us several times and played trumpet-flugelhorn duets with Father. 34. A late Baroque church dating from the end of the eighteenth century, it was noteworthy for the cu­ rious echo beneath the chandelier and for the fresco adorning the cupola.

My great-grandmother was disowned by her family and thrown out of the house before the child was born. She was delivered in a manger like the Virgin Mary. She tried hiring herself out as a seasonal worker, but had trouble finding employment with a babe in arms. 4. Vacek, the schoolmaster there, took her in, and she lived with his family until she finished school. 5. Grandmother enjoyed talking about Jewish rituals: the kosher butchering, the prayers, the celebration of the sabbath and other holidays she experienced at the Khans’.

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