|Zorba the Greek|
First Edition Cover
|Original title||Βίος και Πολιτεία του Αλέξη Ζορμπά 'Life and Adventures of Alexis Zorbas'|
|Publisher||John Lehmann Ltd|
|Publication date||1946 (Greek Version)|
1953 New York
|Media type||Print (Hardback & Paperback)|
Zorba the Greek is a novel written by Nikos Kazantzakis, first published in 1946. Nikos Kazantzakis ( Νίκος Καζαντζάκης) ( February 18, 1883, Heraklion, Crete, Ottoman Empire - Year 1946 ( MCMXLVI) was a Common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full 1946 calendar of the Gregorian calendar.
The narrator, a young Greek intellectual, resolves to set aside his books for a few months after being stung by the parting words of a friend, who has left for the Caucasus in order to help some ethnic Greeks who are undergoing persecution. The Caucasus ( also referred to as North Caucasus) is a geopolitical region located between Europe Asia & Middle East He sets off for Crete in order to re-open a disused lignite mine and immerse himself in the world of peasants and working-class people. Crete ( Greek: Κρήτη transliteration: Krētē, modern transliteration Kriti) is the largest of the Greek islands and the Lignite, often referred to as brown coal, or Rosebud coal by Northern Pacific Railroad, is a soft brown fuel with characteristics that put it somewhere Just before his departure he makes the acquaintance of a mysterious 65-year-old man, Alexis Zorba, who persuades him to take him on as foreman. Alexis Zorbas (Αλέξης Ζορμπάς is the protagonist of Nikos Kazantzakis 's novel Zorba the Greek, a fictionalized version of the real George
On arrival in Crete, they lodge at the ramshackle hotel of Madame Hortense, an old French courtesan, and start work on the mine — although the narrator cannot resist using spare moments to work on an unfinished manuscript about the life and thought of Buddha. This article is about the country For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic France topics. A courtesan in mid-16th century usage referred to a mistress or trained artisan of dance and singing especially one associated with wealthy powerful or upper-class Siddhārtha Gautama ( Sanskrit; Pali: Siddhattha Gotama) was a spiritual Teacher from Ancient India and the founder Over the next few months Zorba profoundly influences the man he calls "Boss", and he comes to see this book as an exorcism rather than a celebration of the religious figure it describes. Exorcism (from Late Latin exorcismus, from Greek exorkizein - to adjure is the practice of evicting Demons or other evil
The narrator absorbs a new zest for life from the people around him, but reversal and tragedy mar his stay, and, alienated by their harshness and amorality, he returns to the mainland.
The book opens in a café in Pireus, just before dawn on a gusty autumn morning in the 1930s. Piraeus (pɪˈræʊs Πειραιάς, piɾeˈas Πειραιεύς, piɾeˈefs is a city in the periphery of Attica, Greece, and a The 1930s were described as an abrupt shift to more radical and conservative lifestyles as countries were struggling to find a solution to the Great Depression. As the narrator waits for daybreak, he ponders the train of events that has led to his decision to go to Crete, including the emotional departure some months before of his nationalist friend, Stavridakis, on a humanitarian expedition to the Caucasus.
He is about to dip into his copy of Dante's Divine Comedy when he feels he is being watched; he turns around and sees a man of around sixty peering at him through the glass door. The Divine Comedy The man enters and immediately approaches him to ask for work. He claims expertise as a chef, a miner, and player of the santuri, or cimbalom, and introduces himself as Alexis Zorba. The cimbalom (most common English spelling is a concert Hammer dulcimer. The narrator is fascinated by Zorba's opinions and expressive manner and decides to employ him as a foreman. On their way to Crete, they talk on a great number of subjects, and Zorba's soliloquies set the tone for a large part of the book.
On arrival, they reject the hospitality of Anagnostis and Kondomanolious the café-owner, and on Zorba's suggestion make their way to Madame Hortense's hotel, which is nothing more than a row of old bathing-huts. The narrator spends Sunday roaming the island, the landscape of which reminds him of "good prose, carefully ordered, sober. . . powerful and restrained" and reads Dante. On returning to the hotel for dinner, the pair invite Madame Hortense to their table and get her to talk about her past as a courtesan. Zorba gives her the pet-name "Bouboulina" and, with the help of his cimbalom, seduces her.
The next day, the mine opens and work begins. The narrator, who has socialist ideals, attempts to get to know the workers, but Zorba warns him to keep his distance: "Man is a brute. . . . If you're cruel to him, he respects and fears you. If you're kind to him, he plucks your eyes out. "
Zorba is described as "a living heart, a large voracious mouth, a great brute soul, not yet severed from mother earth. " The novel can be perceived as a vaccine against metaphysical thinking and it describes the contrast introduced by Friedrich Nietzsche between the Apollonian and the Dionysian outlook on life. Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (October 15 1844 August 25 1900 ( was a nineteenth-century German philosopher and classical philologist Apollo/the narrator represents the spirit of order and rationality, while Dionysus/Zorba represents the spirit of ecstatic, spontaneous will to live. In Classical mythology, Dionysus or Dionysos (in Greek, Διόνυσος or Διώνυσος; associated with Roman It could be argued that the narrator does not make much of a struggle against the Dionysian spirit; however, the book is a tribute to life in this world, as was the philosophy of Nietzsche.
The narrator sets off on a journey to overcome his life as a "bookworm" and though he passes a night of Dionysian ecstasy in the bed of the widow, he is not converted to a life of Dionysian self-abandonment. Just as Nietzsche recognized that the healthy human must balance its Dionysian and Apollonian impulses, so the narrator returns to his Apollonian life of calm scholarship, only now with a Dionysian passion toward his life of the mind. He no longer sees scholarship as a bookworm's evasion of life. Instead, he returns to books with the same exuberance that Zorba shows toward all of the objects of his desire. Speaking to Zorba, the boss says, "I am going to do with my books what you did with the cherries. I'm going to eat so much paper it'll make me sick. I shall spew it all up and then be rid of it forever" (298).
The story was later turned into a film as well as a ballet and a musical. Zorba the Greek (originally titled Alexis Zorbas) is a 1964 film based on the novel Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis
-- "What is your favorite dish, grandad?" -- "All of them, my son. It's a great sin to say this is good and that is bad. Sin is a term used mainly in a religious context to describe an act that violates a moral Rule, or the state of having committed such a violation " -- "Why? Can't we make a choice?" -- "No, of course we can't. " -- "Why not?" -- "Because there are people who are hungry. " I was silent, ashamed. My heart had never been able to reach that height of nobility and compassion.