Ervin Lázár is the creator of a genre we may safely call
Central European folk surrealism, which takes on the quality of a
hallucinatory exploration into that part of the soul where beauty, hope,
and yearning live in close proximity with the harsh realities of life.
The queer identities of the outsiders in Gordon's work – and her own public lesbian identity – are refreshing challenges to the male-dominated, heterocentric Hungarian literary canon and literary community.
Literary historian Thomas Cooper talks to Imre Kertész in this new
volume published in the Seagull Books series of The University of
Chicago Press. An excerpt from the interview and Cooper's fine
introductory essay, published here by courtesy of the publisher.
One of the Hungarian literary sensations of the last decade, Jadviga's Pillow (1997) was an oddity in Hungary, being both a critical and a public success. The novel, portraying life in a Slovak village in Hungary between the two world wars, was recently published in German under the title Das Kissen der Jadviga.
"This is your last night, László," said the voice in the phone. It was 3 AM, on a night in early spring, 1978. I put down the phone. After a couple of minutes, it started to ring again. "You’ll be dead by the morning, László," said the voice.