Fear of Mirrors
6 x 7.5 inches, 332pp. July 2010
ISBN : 9781906497156
Rs 450.00 (HB)
In this novel from esteemed political writer Tariq Ali, a father, Vlady, loses his job when he refuses to renounce socialist beliefs in the newly unified Germany—and as a result wants to explain to his alienated son what their family’s long and passionate involvement with communism has really meant. The story he tells is of Ludwik, a Polish secret agent and Gertrude, Vlady’s mother, whose desire for Ludwik is matched only by her devotion to the communist ideal. As the plot unfolds through the political upheavals of the twentieth century, Vlady describes the hopes aroused by the Bolshevik revolution and discovers the almost unbearable truth about the family’s betrayal. Written with deep political insight and sensitivity, Fear of Mirrors relates the extraordinary history of Central Europe from the perspective of those on the other side of the cold war.
“Ali folds his drama around the tight, cultlike atmosphere of Communist Party life, peopled by idealists who find their lives encumbered by betrayals, power grabs, and corruption and who, in the post-Communist era, must come to terms with their complicity with Stalinism. . . . This is a valuable book, especially for those interested in the current thinking of the European left.”—Publishers Weekly, on the first edition
Tariq Ali is a writer, critic and film-maker. He has written over a dozen books on world history and politics as well as scripts for both stage and screen. The first novel of his Islam Quartet, Shadows of the Pomegranate Tree, has been translated into several languages and was awarded the Archbishop San Clemente del Instituto Rosalia de Castro Prize for the best foreign language fiction published in Spain in 1994. The third, The Stone Woman was published by Verso in 2000.
Seagull World Literature