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Seeing Paperback – April 9, 2007
Saving Sara (Redemption Series)
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From The New Yorker
Copyright © 2006 The New Yorker --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
*** Spoiler alert: the following paragraphs reveal a few elements of the plot. ***
In the Nov. 8, 2004, issue of "The American Conservative" magazine, the managing editor, Kara Hopkins, advocated not voting in the pending presidential election. "Silence is a profound expression," she argued, "and enough unraised voices eventually turn even the most partisan heads." "Elections," she contended, "maintain the illusion of opposing parties exchanging ideas rather than political animals competing for power. Selling voting as the ultimate expression of citizenship . . . legitimizes the process that keeps them in control and makes the public docile by enforcing the notion that we rule ourselves."
Whether or not one agrees with Hopkins, she offers a perspective that Saramago might endorse, to judge by "Seeing." In "Seeing," some 70 percent of the residents of the capital of an unnamed country turn in blank ballots in an election, refusing to vote for the Party of the Right, the Party of the Center, or the Party of the Left. The government, dominated by unsavory and unprincipled authoritarians, is horrified that the rituals of democracy have generated a challenge to the government's legitimacy and orders the election to be reheld. But the percentage of blank votes is higher than before.
The government's reaction, though often fumbling, is vicious and lethal. It uses various Orwellian techniques and, as it deems necessary, violence to punish the capital's residents and try to get them to appear to respect the available choices, regardless of their true feelings about the three parties.
This is a fable.Read more ›
In his first book, the author helps the reader understand how a world would look if all social stability and government broke down and the populace was left blind and helpless. The picture is very ugly and very painful. Yet, it has a realism that can not be ignored.
"Seeing" asks an instrumental operative question: "Are those who see, less blind than those who don't?" Here Saramago again creates a sociological and political microcosm to illustrate his points. There are many points he makes, but one of his central ones is that citizens can be recognized by "standing up and refusing to be counted." This act seems to those in control as a giant insurrection. Additionally, when people spontaneously choose to make such a statement; what should the government do about it? And they can make it unilaterally, without a movement or a leader, per se.
Saramago also gives the reader an interesting and experimental writing style. He dispenses with much normal grammar, yet rarely does this impede the reader's ability to glean complete understanding, or close to it, of what is happening in the story. Novelistically, the book is extremely well written and engaging.
In many senses, Saramago conveys his feeling that people, events and beliefs can be manipulated. But they can only be manipulated so far. If Saramago is speaking of any specific country, he takes care not to reveal it.Read more ›
Thus begins Jose Saramago's brilliant new book, SEEING. The setting is the same unnamed country where, four years earlier, a plague of contagious but temporary "white blindness" afflicted first the capital city, then spread throughout the country.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I'm a fan of Saramago and have read most of his books which i have enjoyed. I found his book difficult to engage. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Jim H.
Not as good as Blindness, but a good read nonetheless, all the better if you have read Blindness first. The ending, while not necessarily a surprise, is shocking. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Bill Winters
Horrible. Didn't like the writing style. First 70% of this book was so hard to read and BORING. The love of commas and lack of quotation marks drove me nuts. Read morePublished 10 months ago by J. Newby
Yes, not impressed. No punctuation for over a page and a half! How come? You need punctuation, Mr or Ms. translator to know when to stop and move onto a new thought. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Ibrahim
Not to steal anybody's fun but Seeing is a sequel to Jose Saramago's Blindness which I highly recommended. Read morePublished 12 months ago by garythegrim
Great story in the end, but just like Blindness I went insane with the structure - lack of punctuation, capitalization, paragraphs, etc. Takes some effort to get into.Published 12 months ago by Cory A.
A very good writer interesting ideas. Recommended if you like to think while reading a book.Published 14 months ago by V. E. M.
Those of you who read this will probably have read Blindness. They are connected. It is an interesting satire or human behavior and the use/misuse of power. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Karyn Packard
The gap between national/global leaders and the people they claim to lead is growing. The use of police and military to achieve political resu l ts continues. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Daniel Salazar