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XV secolo: i turchi ottomani combattono in Albania una delle più lunghe e sanguinose guerre che la storia registri. Uno sterminato esercito turco assedia la cittadella albanese di Kruja, mentre, sui monti circostanti, si aggira Scanderbeg con i suoi guerriglieri. Decine di migliaia di soldati tentano di scalare a ogni costo i bastioni insanguinati; accorgimenti e astuzie sXV secolo: i turchi ottomani combattono in Albania una delle più lunghe e sanguinose guerre che la storia registri. Uno sterminato esercito turco assedia la cittadella albanese di Kruja, mentre, sui monti circostanti, si aggira Scanderbeg con i suoi guerriglieri. Decine di migliaia di soldati tentano di scalare a ogni costo i bastioni insanguinati; accorgimenti e astuzie senza fine vengono posti in atto; la storia del comandante in capo è drammaticamente legata alla presa di quelle mura; occorre espugnare la cittadella prima che rimbombino "i tamburi della pioggia", segnale non solo di un mutamento atmosferico ma anche della fine di ogni speranza di vittoria......

Title : I tamburi della pioggia
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9788846208194
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 236 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

I tamburi della pioggia Reviews

  • Ahmed
    2018-08-15 17:00

    أنا لم أسمع بالكاتب قبل ذلك . ولم أكن أعرف حتى جنسيته. كل ما لفت نظرى انه حائز على جائزة البوكر الدوليه . وتجاربى مع هذه الجائزة مبشرة جدا. فأخذت الكتاب لأجد ان المؤلف ألبانى ولم يسبق لى الاطلاع على أدب هذه المنطقه بالذات . ليكون لى الحظ فى قراءة عمل من أعظم ما يكون على الاطلاقدائما العمل الروائى الممزوج بتاريخ مرحله معينه يكون امام احتمالين لا ثالث لهما: اما ان يكون العمل عظيم او يكون عمل سئ ولا وسط بينهما وهذا العمل عظيم بكل ما تحمله الكلمة من معنى.تحكى عن فترة الفتح العثمانى لألبانيا . ترجمه جامده (ناشفه) لا حرارة فيها ولا أدرى اهى وجهة نظر المترجم ام النص الاصلى ؟تفاصيل كثيرة (جدا) لا ملل فيها . يضعك فى قلب المعركه من قرأ (دروز بلغراد) وانبهر بها سيجد هذا العمل مبهر

  • فهد الفهد
    2018-08-19 14:54

    الحصار في كل مرة تقرأ فيها كتاباً تاريخياً يجب أن تنتبه إلى أن المؤلف إذ يلاحق الأحداث والدول والقادة والمعارك ينسى الإنسان، وليس هذا خطئه، فدوره هو في أن يدون المعلومة التاريخية، أو يحققها، أو يحاول استخلاص مغزى أو معنى منها، أما عن الإنسان الذي عاش ومات، عانى، ضحك وبكى، حلم ثم مات فدفن ودفنت أحلامه، بل ربما دفنت مدينته ذاتها من بعده، وصارت أطلالاً موحشة، هذا الإنسان لن يستعيده لنا إلا الروائي، وحده هو من سينقض على ما كتبه المؤرخ، ينبشه، يفككه، يعيد بعثه، ليجعل أبطاله يعيشون هناك، كأنما بعثت تلك المدينة المهجورة ليوم، بعثت لتكتب وتخلد أدباً. ولكن أينه الروائي العبقري؟ الذي تخرج من بين يديه هذه التحفة !! كاداريه – أو قاداريه إن شئنا إعادة الأشياء إلى أصلها – أحد هؤلاء العباقرة، لأنك تأتي لديه، وقد قرأت كلمة حصار مئات المرات في كتب التاريخ، وشاهدت الحصار في أفلام هوليودية عظمى من وزن (Troy) و(Kingdom of Heaven) و(The Lord of the Rings) حيث تمطر المدن المحصنة بالصخور الضخمة، وحيث تخاض معارك عنيفة على ثغرات الأسوار، وحيث يتعاضد الصوت بالصورة ليسلبا لبك، ويجعلاك في قلب الحدث، ولكنك مع هذا كله تدرك وأنت تقرأ كاداريه أنك ما شهدت حصاراً. إن الحصار ليس تلك المعارك السريعة التي تستمر ليوم أو يومين كما تنقل لنا الأفلام، إن الحصار الذي نعيشه مع كاداريه هو آلاف من الجنود الذين يحاولون العيش في العراء، إنه القادة العسكريون الذي يجتمعون بشكل متواصل على مرأى القلعة الكئيبة حالمين بلحظة الفتح، إنها المحاولات الفاشلة، والموتى الذين يتكدسون تحت الأسوار، إنها المقاومة الشرسة والعنيفة، وإنها وهو الأهم المعسكر بل على الأصح المدينة المصغرة التي تقام مؤقتاً بجانب القلعة، هناك حيث تسبك المدافع الضخمة، وحيث يطعم آلاف الجنود المتضورين، وحيث فرق الهندسة العسكرية تحاول صناعة آلات الحصار، وقطع قنوات الماء التي تروي المحاصرين. تفتتح هذه الرواية في ألبانيا القرن الخامس عشر، حيث جيش تركي ضخم بقيادة (أوغورلو طرسن باشا) - القائد العسكري المغضوب عليه والذي أعطي هذه المهمة الصعبة كاختبار أخير – يحاصر قلعة ألبانية، منذ هذه البداية وحتى 375 صفحة تليها وتكوِن متن الرواية، سنكون في معسكر طرسن باشا ورجاله، لن نتخطى الأسوار أبداً لنعيش مع الألبان المحاصرين، لن نعرف أحداً منهم، سيمنح المؤلف في بداية كل فصل صفحتين فقط للمحاصرين تروى بضمير المتكلم، ثم سنمضي بقية الفصل مع أهم شخصية أو لنقل الشخصية التي تجعلها وظيفتها تتنقل في جميع أنحاء المعسكر، إنه موثق الحملة (مولى جلبي)، هناك سنلتقي بكبار الضباط والقادة، سنطلع على الاجتماعات الحربية، والخطط التي توضع ومن ثم تنفذ، كل المخاوف والخسائر والآلام، كل التعساء الضائعين، والقلعة صامدة لا يقتحمها الفرسان، ولا حملة السيوف، ولا الانكشارية أو الاستشهاديين، وكل أقسام الجيش التركي التي يبرع كاداريه في استخدامها في روايته. هل هذه الرواية عن الصمود كما حاول البعض تفسيرها؟ هل هي تتحدث عن صمود الألبان أمام القوة العثمانية العظمى، وهو ما يفخرون به في تاريخهم، وخاصة وقت (إسكندر بك) الذي يحوم في هذه الرواية كشبح فوق رؤوس الأتراك، ولكن الألبان غير حاضرين في الرواية، إذن هل هي عن (حالة الحصار) التي تصيب المحاصِر، خوفه من الفشل، خوفه من الشتاء القادم الذي سيجعله يفك الحصار ويرحل، وحساباته التي تدخل فيها الخسائر والعوائد المتوقعة من الفتح، كل هذا يجعله أمام حسابات لا نهاية لها، بينما ليس لدى المحاصرين إلا خيار الصمود والصمود فقط. رواية عظيمة، والوصف فيها وخلق الظروف ومحاولات الاقتحام مكتوبة بنفس عالٍ وقلب شجاع. أخيراً اكتشفت وأنا اقلب كتب كاداريه في مكتبتي أنني امتلك نسخة من هذه الرواية بترجمة أخرى لمحمد غضيمة صادرة من دار الآداب، ولكن بعنوان مخترع (طبول المطر)، وهو عنوان لا علاقة له بالعنوان الألباني ولا الفرنسي أو حتى الإنجليزي !! وبعدد صفحات يقل مئة صفحة عن النسخة التي لدي !! كما أن المترجم للأسف دمج النص الصغير الذي يخص القلعة الألبانية والذي يوضع كمقدمة لكل فصل ببقية الفصل، فصار لا يسهل تمييزه عن بقية الفصل التركي، ما يحسب لهذه الترجمة فقط هو الاحتفاظ باسم الفرق العسكرية التركية كما وردت في النص من دون ترجمتها، ولكن أفسد هذا حقيقة أن المؤلف لم يشرح للقارئ معنى كل اسم، فلذا لن يفهم قارئ هذه النسخة دور كل فرقة !! من أراد أن يقرأ هذه الرواية فعليه بنسخة (الدار العربية للعلوم ناشرون) والتي ترجمها (محمد درويش) وهي متوفرة الكترونياً، رغم أن هذه الرواية مما يقتنى.

  • أشرف فقيه
    2018-08-17 15:02

    هذه رواية عظيمة.. ليس كرواية تاريخية وحسب وليس لأنها تبدع في وصف محض "حصار".. لكن إسماعيل كاداريه وخلال الحملة العثمانية التي اختلقها على قلعة ما في القلب الألباني قد نجح أن ينقل لنا روح ذاك العصر بأسره، متجسدة في فلسفة الامبراطورية، فلسفة التوسع، فلسفة الحصار والإبادة وفلسفة المقاومة. إنه قد نجح في أن يجعلنا نفهم جوهر هويته الألبانية المتنازعة بين استحقاقات ماضيها المسيحي البعيد، والعثماني الأقرب منه، ونجح في أن ينقل لنا كل مبررات اللبس والارتباك والتشتت التي تعتري تلك الهوية خلال فصول روايته. والعبقرية تتجلى تماماً في أنه قد فعل ذلك متعمداً اختيار أبطال روايته من قلب المعسكر الغازي. إنه لم يستخدم ضمير المتكلم الألباني إلا نادراً. لم يختلق إلا شخصية واحدة محورية ألبانية. لكنه ومن خلال وصف المعسكر الآخر.. المعسكر التركي القادم لمحو الكيان الألباني، قد نجح باقتدار في إيصال صوت شعبه وقضيته بكل موضوعية كما يظهر لي.تتميز الرواية بنفس سردي بديع، وبإحاطة بالتفاصيل التاريخية، وبتصوير بليغ جداً لأهوال الحرب ولنفسيات الشخصيات التي تم اختيارها بحرفنة لتصلح للتمدد عبر الزمان والمكان. النص يجيد وصف تلك المرحلة من طور العروج العثماني بكل اندفاعه المحموم للسيطرة على العالم وكل ملابساته وتعقيداته حد الاقتدار. هذه الترجمةالعربية عانت من بعض الركاكة هنا وهناك، إلا أنها تظل مقبولة جداً بل ومطلوبة بإلحاح لا سيما وقد تأخرت ثلاثة عقود عن هذه الرائعة الأدبية العالمية.

  • إيمان
    2018-08-04 18:49

    تدور الرواية حول حصار القوات العثمانية لأحد القلاع الألبانية المتخيلة. و لئن أمعن الكاتب في وصف أطوار الحرب الدائرة فانه لم يهمل الجانب الانساني من... خلال عدة شخصيات من ذلك المؤرخ , الشاعر, الفلكي, الباشا, حريم الباشا و غيرهمعادة لا أستسيغ الروايات التاريخية التي تسرد وقائع الحروب لكن البناء القصصي هنا كان جيدا و كذلك الأمر بالنسبة الى تركيب الشخصيات و الترجمة التي استطاع من خلالها محمد درويش نقل هذا العمل الأدبي الى القارىء العربي كأحسن ما يكون...

  • Shane
    2018-07-28 20:10

    The author claims that this is not a historical novel, and yet the story is set in the mid 15th century and is a primer on the methods of warfare used at the time. It is also a metaphor for Albania during its Communist rule in the 20th century, for although the invading Ottoman empire circa 1474 is portrayed as the bad guy, the implication and insinuation is that this totalitarian empire is a reflection of later day Albania itself.In a nutshell, an Albanian fortress is besieged by an invading Ottoman army, but prevails despite everything that is thrown at it – from ladders, to death squads, to tunnelling, to cannon, to shutting off aquifers, to cutting off food supplies, to throwing poisoned vermin over its walls. There are spies on both sides; the reward for failure is imprisonment or death (even cannon that don’t fire straight are ‘fustigated,’ life is cheap, and God help any female Albanians taken prisoner – they don’t last even an evening in the hands of their sex hungry enemy obsessed with blond women’s pubic hair.In the end, the Ottomans retreat, and Albania is safe until the next invasion...and the next... for victory is finally achieved only when the minds of the opponents are vanquished.I was intrigued by the vast support network that buffets an army of this size: mufti, dervishes, astrologers, spell casters, architects, chroniclers, poets, hoxas (professional prayers), dream interpreters, keepers of the seals, knife grinders, dwarfs, harem wives, eunuchs, and water carriers, to name a few.Even though the story is primarily told via the lowly chronicler, Mevla Celebi, the point of view pans the various players in the invading camp, including the commander-in-chief, who is most at risk for a failed campaign. We also begin each chapter with a page or two from the diary of an unknown soldier on the Albanian side, which sums up the reaction to the previous chapter’s events from those under siege. The style mixes humour with terror to bring out a chilling effect on the reader. On reflection, I realized how reminiscent the Ottoman Empire’s practices are of present life, not only during Communism in the 20th century, but in our modern public or private sector corporations today. For even though superstition has been replaced by rationality and the human casualty rate may not be so high today, the following still applies: win at all costs, scapegoat and sideline those who fail, spy on one’s competitors, some people are more equal than others in the human bureaucracy, pick your battles, the chief solicits feedback but makes his own decision in the end, human resources are disposable etc., etc. Certainly a book worth reading and reflecting on whether much has changed since the 15th century, especially in our attitudes towards conquest and acquisition.

  • Eslam Mohammed
    2018-08-07 18:13

    لو سألتنى عن أهم ما يميز كتابة كاداريه، سأجيبك بإيجاز السلاسة والعذوبة، البساطة والعمق، السهل الممتنع إجمالا...ف سرده لقصة حصار جيش اﻹمبراطورية العثمانية ﻹحدى القلاع اﻷلبانية، المدخل إلى منطقة البلقان، اتسم كاداريه بأهم مايميز كبار المبدعين، الدقة، الشمول، الحس الجمالى، القيمة اﻹنسانية...جاء تركيز كاداريه على جانب الجيش العثمانى، وصفا، وهو ما أبدع فيه، وتحليلا، وحصرا، وتفسيرا، مع إشارات ضمنية موجزة للجانب اﻷلبانى، وهو ماقد يعد قصورا ف المعالجة من وجهة نظر، وذكاء وإيجازا من وجهة نظر أخرى... رسم الشخصيات، مع تعددها، جاء جيدا وإن شابه إهمال لشخصيات على حساب أخرى، الحدث هو السيد ف هذا العمل بإمتياز، والبقية ظلال تدور حوله وتمهد له...قراءة أولى ممتعة لهذا المبدع الكبير المجهول لكثير من قراء العربية، تشجع على المضى قدما ف إستكشاف باقى أعماله، التى جعلته فى نظر الكثيرين جديرا بحيازة جائزة نوبل، وإن تأخرت عنه كثيرا فيم يبدو...تجدر اﻹشارة إلى حصول هذه الرواية على جائزة مان بوكر اﻹنجليزية عام 2005، وسأرفق هنا مشهد الرواية الختامى، لا لشىء إلا لأننى رأيته موحيا، وهو ماسينجلى مغزاه لمن يقرأ العمل كاملت، دمتم بخير :)

  • Michael
    2018-08-11 20:02

    This may seem like a straight forward historical novel about a citadel in Albania under seige from the mighty Ottaman Empire, but it is so much more than that. Written originally in 1970 in Albania just after the Soviets had shattered the Prague uprising in Czechoslovakia, it is one of the best critics of hostile invasion and control you will ever read.Considering the original was Albanian and it was updated in french in the mid 90s a big congratulations to all the translators involved.

  • Dr. Cristina Bettencourt
    2018-08-04 21:07

    My favorite book by this author. He seems to be able to recreate the mentality and the perspective people may have had in those times. He makes me "feel" with them regardless of the fact that I am submerged in my zeitgeist, and in principle a bad neutral observer. This combined with a compelling writing style.

  • Hakushi Hamaoka
    2018-08-13 15:48

    I came to feel like visiting Albania :)According to the Afterword by the translator, Ismail Kadare's one of the main themes in his novels is the intricate relationships between the obvious other (the influences of the Ottoman Empire) for the Albanians and who the Albanians are. Since Albania was conquered by the Ottoman Empire, people there were affected by its culture, politics, and other social institutions. The Albanian are, however, still Albanians, who are supposed to have rather actively adapted themselves to those which were more powerful than individual Albanian people. Probably, similar experiences may be shared by many people in other parts of this world. This novel actually evoked imagination about how people establish, enjoy and suffer their respective lives.As the author clarifies, this novel is not about history. By so clarifying, it seems to me that it enables us to re-think what history is (should be) in relation to our banal reality. I re-confirm that novels have power to help us renew our understandings of what humanity is reminding us of the importance to learn human race's precious skills and knowledge painfully developed and being practiced all through its history.

  • Fatima Alammar
    2018-07-19 13:44

    رواية محشوّة بالأفكار والأسئلة، لاهبة بحمم الحرب ودوّي الطبول والمدافع، مصاغة بنَفَس شاعريّ لافت، تنفذ عميقا في أوردة وشرايين الشخصيات المبتلاة بالمشاركة في حصار طويل، ممضّ، وقاسي: تلفتك شخصية مؤرخ الحملة، بكل حساسيته وقلقه وخجله وارتباكه ومثابرته وانشغاله الذهنيّ وتساؤلاته. المهندس جياور (نموذج رجل العلم والتخصص) بوجهه الجامد، الخالي من التعابير، وبكلامه الذي تُبتر فيه الألفاظ "يصفّها صفا بلا أدنى مسافة أو فاصلة وينطقها بإيقاع موحّد لا يتبدّل، إن في حديثه الرتيب المرهق شيئا من الصحراء". ضابط الإدارة (نموذج رجل الإحصاء والأرقام والحسابات الدقيقة) بنفوره من الضجيج، خيمته التي نُصبت بعيدا عن المركز لتكون في هدوء "نسبيّ". الفلكي الباحث عن مجدٍ يكلّفه حياته. طبيب الجيش ذو الأفكار الجريئة. الشاعر الذي يصاب بالعمى قبل أن ينظم قصيدته التي أرادها عظيمة ...

  • Val
    2018-07-19 19:11

    Ismail Kadaré often used Albanian history and legends as the setting for his novels. This one is about attempts to withstand a siege by Ottoman forces and shows the inhabitants of the beleaguered town. It may be an allegory of modern times, but it is not clear exactly what it might be an allegory of. Albania was a Maoist communist country caught between the powerful Soviet powers and their allies and the capitalist force of Europe and US global trade. Who did Ismail Kadaré see as the aggressive invading power?It is very good as a historical novel, but perhaps too oblique to work as satire. I really enjoyed it and would rate it highly, but felt I must be missing some of the hidden inner meaning.

  • Abeer alkhalil
    2018-07-21 20:50

    لم تتخللها لغة تنسيني وحشية تفاصيلها الموضوع الحرب والحصار وضياعقيمة الإنسانية .. ربما وكوني فتاة لم تصلني حروفها لليوم احتقر كل من يبجل الحروب وأن كانت بضرورة كمايزعمون !تذكرت كيف إني اقرأ بتحرر من العواطف تاركة التقييم للعقل والفائدةوهنا لم أستفد والذنب ليس ذنب الكاتب ولكنه ذنب الموضوع حيث تولى الأهمية للسرد التوثيقيوأنا كإنسانة أنتظر أحداث من بشر تذكرني بماهيتي ولو بلحظات بسيطة ...تقفز من بين حطام النفس هامسة أو صارخة ندم أو تقرف مما يحدث وليعود بعدها لسرده المتخمبالآلات والإنتصارات الحربية بأي شيء وعلى حساب كل شيء !

  • Mohd Antar
    2018-08-16 14:13

    ملحمه تاريخيه تصف الحصار المروض علي قلعه البانيه بقوات الدوله العثمانيه، وقد ابدع الكاتب في وصف تلك الحرب وهذا الحصار وجعلنا نتعايش مع الجنود وصلابتهم وضعفهم الانساني ،مع القاده وصراعاتهم ،وبحرفيه جيده انتقل من السرد عن معسكر المهاجمين الي السرد عن معسكر المدافعين اللذين يحمون العرض والارض وبالتالي تعايشنا مع كلا الطرفين في معاناتهم واحلامهم وأمالهم.وبحبكه روائيه جيده ابرز الكاتب ان صاحب الحق سوف يحقق النصر في النهايه حتي ولو كان اقل قوه..تستحق عن جداره جائزه البوكر

  • Yazeed AlMogren
    2018-07-21 20:49

    تسحرك دقة التفاصيل وجمالها في هذه الرواية، نصوص فاخرة واتقان المترجم في ترجمة نصوصها جعلتها رواية تاريخية ممتعة لاتمل منها، تنقلك أحداث الحصار بين ضباط الجيشين المتحاربين لتظهر لك بسالة المدافعين الألبان في صد الهجوم والدفاع عن أرضهم وبين شدة عزم الأتراك والرغبة في إحتلال القلعة المحاصرة.

  • Gumble's Yard
    2018-07-26 14:56

    Story of the siege by the Ottoman army of the first castle they encounter on invading Albania – the story which describes the horrors of siege warfare in detail is written mainly from an Ottoman viewpoint with a variety of characters mainly non-directly military but seen from the view point of the confused official Chronicler. There are interim shorter chapters written more as a chronicle by the defending Christians and which provide good summaries of what has actually happened. Main characters include: the ladies of the Harem; the architect, stargazer and engineer; the Quartermaster (whose stand back musings on conquest of such a fierce people, on the desirability and practicality of destroying a nation and on the fact that the legendary Albanian leader is effectively sacrificing his people to build a longer lasting myth of the nation) give the novel historical resonance. Very well written and enjoyable even if some of the historical resonance on what is meant to be at one level a picture of the Hoxha’s siege like mentality is not really visible to a UK reader.

  • Đurđica Bolfek
    2018-08-15 17:56

    To što je pročitana u dahu govori dovoljno. Baš volim Kadarea.

  • Geoffrey Fox
    2018-08-18 13:06

    In the summer of 1429 the greatest army ever seen, under command of Tirsun Pasha, attacks the citadel that is the first line of defense of Christian Albania, expecting to conquer it by rapid assault — but every stratagem (repeated assaults, undermining, infestation with diseased rats, and finally discovering and cutting the city’s aqueduct) fails, and when the rains come (saving the city from surrendering to thirst) the remains of the vast army withdraw in disorder from the now half-ruined town. Officers, men and the pasha’s harem women of the Ottoman horde are individualized, speaking or thinking their anxieties and hopes, while the besieged citadel is represented by a single voice (perhaps that of a clerical chronicler?) representing the concerns of the whole population. Among the Ottomans, the most memorable characters include the career-anxious pasha (if he conquers, he may even gain command of a future siege of Constantinople: if he fails, it will be the end of his career and possibly his life), the fearful chronicler looking for impressive, heroic phrases to describe the disappointing siege (possibly a self-caricature of Kadare, cast in such a role by Enver Hoxha); the cynical, pragmatic Quartermaster General (who knows that an army travels on its stomach); the self-important poet and the doctor hoping to spread disease; the clever janissary Tuz Okçan, and the harem women, especially the pasha’s favorite, Exher, and “Blondie”. Descriptions of siege warfare are extremely vivid: Attempts to scale the walls with long ladders, which are burnt by the defenders pouring boiling pitch, the difficult and dangerous work of sappers trying to tunnel under the wall, the casting and firing of a new, big cannon, the horrors of mutilation, the fears, jealousy, moments of drunken exuberation and other moments of despair among the besiegers and the great anxiety of the besieged. The conversations among the harem women, completely at the mercy of the pasha, and the eunuch charged with serving them and keeping their pubis shaved for the pasha’s pleasure, are especially chilling.Kadare wrote this in 1969, when Enver Hoxha — Mao Tse-Tung’s only ally in Europe — feared Soviet invasion in the wake of the invasion of Czechoslovakia & fomented national anxiety about a possible siege. The idolized 15th-century Albanian resistance leader George Castrioti, known as “Skanderbeg” (“Lord Alexander”), is mentioned frequently but (prudently) Kadare never describes him directly or lets him appear. Kadare’s strong insistence on the Christian faith of the defenders is probably historically accurate for the period, just prior to the actual Ottoman conquest and conversion to Islam, but was politically uncomfortable. In 1990 Kadare, Albania’s most celebrated novelist, left for France & began revising this and other works, expanding this novel with pieces that had been cut by censors in 1969; the French translation, on which this English translation is based, is of that expanded version. In 2005 Kadare became the first winner of the Man Booker International Prize.

  • LeAnn
    2018-08-07 20:54

    In The Siege, Ismail Kadare succeeds in telling a story that is at once a fictionalized piece of history, a believable what-if about the Ottoman invasion of 15th-century Albania, and a subtle commentary on modern politics and war. As with other armies throughout history, the Turks led military campaigns from late spring to early fall. The Siege begins as the Catholic Albanians, having sent the Ottomon envoys packing, prepare for the coming of the invading force. The tale is told in two perspectives, alternating with very brief comments from an unknown Albanian, perhaps a monk or priest writing a journal of the siege, and longer chapters told from the viewpoint of a few key Turkish players, including the Pasha, or commander-in-chief, the camp historian, and a doomed astrologer.It is the contrast between the ordinary Turk with the views of the war council that highlights the medieval-modern aspects of Kadare's tale. On the one hand, fervent Turkish soldiers fear and disdain the "symbol of torture" -- the Cross -- that looms above the castle's walls; they listen to the mullahs and work themselves into a passionate fury on the eve of battle. The naive camp historian frets and worries over worthy verses glorifying the Ottoman cause. He fears that he isn't up to the task of writing an epic and finds himself with writer's block. There is the astrologer who wrongly predicts success and the confident poet who is blinded. There are the thousands who die trying to scale the walls.On the other hand, the Quartermaster, a world-weary and pragmatic man, worries about supplying the troops and discusses the Albanians and how to defeat them with the nuance of a seasoned diplomat. The doctor debates the pros and cons of bioweapons such as plague-ridden rats over other pestilent diseases and other animal vectors -- all of which must be approved from on high. The Pasha suspects that he's been chosen by his enemies in the Padishah's court to lead the campaign, whose failure is his life. The engineers build bigger and better cannons with no concern for human life, only whether the massive destruction can be predicted and controlled, and the enigmatic architect, a figure who moves in and out of Turkish prisons, is a renegade Christian selling out the architectural secrets of his fellow Christians. There is even a war cry chosen and sent down from on high.Written with a light hand, The Siege manages to leaves the reader disturbed and not a little sad.

  • Tony
    2018-08-10 18:49

    Originally published in Albania in 1970, and then translated into French in the mid-90s, this excellent novel has finally made it into English. It tells the story of a fictional 15th-century siege of an Albanian castle by an Ottoman army. The details of this appear to be largely drawn from accounts of the 1474 siege of Shkoder, as well as the exploits of Gjergj Kastrioti Skanderbeg (aka The Dragon of Albania), who led the resistance to the Ottomans for about twenty years, until his death in 1468.The siege is mainly told from the Ottoman perspective, as we are taken into the Pasha's tent for discussions of strategy, wander around the camp with the hapless scribe/historian sent to chronicle the impending great victory, and listen to the monologues of the quartermaster who has to keep the siege logistically afloat. There are also occasional brief interludes written from the perspective of the Christian defenders trying to conserve their water until the arrival of the rainy season that would effectively save them.The mechanics and psychology of the siege are wonderfully brought to life, as the Ottomans struggle to bring their superior manpower and technology to bear in an effective manner. In that sense, it's a gripping, effective, and often bloody, work of historical fiction which will appeal to fans of that genre. At the same time, the story appears to function as allegory for the plight of Soviet-dominated Albania during the Cold War. The Ottoman army -- cowering under an absolute ruler abetted by a pervasive secret police, riven by internal factions (warlords, mystics, technocrats, etc.), and subject to show-trials and cruel and unusual punishments -- bears striking similarities to Albania under the rule of Enver Hoxha. Meanwhile, the castle's desperate defenders take on the role of freedom-loving intelligentsia within that same society. The symbolism is stark, since history tells us that the Ottoman Empire does eventually conquer Albania, and the castle does fall.The translation is very good, as the camp comes alive on every page, and the battle scenes resound off the page. But it's to Kadare's immense credit that the story remains gripping while conveying its densely layered message. Well worth reading if you have any interest in the Ottoman Empire, Albania, military history, or simply excellent world literature.

  • Adam
    2018-08-02 14:54

    This novel by the Albanian author Ismail Kadare is set during the 15th century when Albania was being attacked by the Ottoman Turks, and the heroic Albanian leader Skanderbeg was still actively fighting the attackers. The edition that I have read was originally written between 1969 and 1970 when albania was being ruled by the repressive dictator, and friend of Stalin, Enver Hoxha. The version that I read was modified by the author between 1993 and 1994 when Enver Hoxha's regime was over. The original earlier edition would have been interesting as it missed out various details that were included in the later one. An Albanian castle is being besieged by a vast Turkish army. Short chapters describe the siege from the point of view of the castle's Christian Albanian defenders. These alternate with longer passages describing the experiences of the Turkish army. The trials and tribulations of the besiegers are described in great detail, and give the reader a vivid idea about siege techniques and the reactions of the besiegers during that period of history. The story begins slowly but the pace quickens about half way through the book.At face value, this is a fictionalised version of many sieges that must have been perpertrated by the Turks against the Albanians. One of its deeper messages is that nothing can be taken at face value. This is a mentality that would have served Albanians living in Hoxha's Albania well. For example, when the Turkish camp is attacked at night, everyone believes that this is the work of Skanderbeg, but then after a while this is questioned. Skanderbeg's very existence is doubted by some.This book is undoubtedly a good read and ought to be read, but it is not one of Kadare's best novels. It lacks some of the crispness of writing that I have admired in some of his other works.

  • Lisa
    2018-07-28 20:06

    I read Kadare’s The Palace of Dreams in 2005, and thought it was an excellent book, but this is even better. At face value, it’s the rivetting story of a C15th siege – the Christian Albanians in the besieged citadel and the Ottomans camped outside. The chapters alternate between these two POV but the Ottomans tell most of the story in what appears to be a straightforward 3rd person narrative. However, there are deliberate anachronisms such as show trials and biological warfare which jolt the reader into recognition that this is an allegory. The colour and the splendour of Ottoman army ceremonials evoke those impressive Soviet military spectacles that we have all seen, and we are reminded of the abuse of power under various Soviet dictatorships by the Pasha’s power to arbitrarily order torture and execution, not to mention irrational military manoevres. (Subtle as this is, Kadare did not escape the attention of the Albanian regime and he had to seek asylum in France in 1990).To read the rest of my review please visithttp://anzlitlovers.wordpress.com/200...

  • Michelle
    2018-08-01 20:47

    Kadare has depicted a subtle commentary on politics and war through a fictionalised period in history.Although definitely not my favourite type of story to read, as it is about a siege, as the title states, and the descriptions of the attack on the citadel were long and repetitive, there were a few sections that were truly a pleasure to read. I particularly liked reading the Quartermaster's "heretical" confidences to the chronicler who pushed such thoughts away and insisted on describing the seige with euphemisms and meaningless phrases.One of the strongest speculations by the Quartermaster was that capturing a nation's castle and trying to annihilate a nation is meaningless and impossible; the best way to destroy a nation would be to corrupt their language, their faith and sense of their own history.A well written novel in which Kadare has managed to capture the fear and atmosphere of a siege and the subtle politics within the ranks of an army, but not a story that I would have chosen to read if it hadn't been for our book club meeting.

  • Saleh Alasfour
    2018-08-10 20:06

    المترجم محمد درويش روعة وقد اعطى هذه الرواية حجمها من خلال المفردات الواضحة. قبل كل فصل كانت تسرد تقريريا بضمير المتكلم المحاصر الألباني بما لا يتجاوز صفحتين ثم تتحول مع كل فصل لضمير الغائب المهاجم العثماني. التفاصيل الهادئة الذي ذكرها الكاتب في وصفه هي فعلا من صورة لي احداث الرواية من اعلى بوضوح وهي من مواطن الجمال. بالنسبة لمواطن القوه فيها الكاتب ذكي بشق الصراع النفسي على جميع الأبطال وجعلهم محاصرين رغم هجومهم للقلعة.المعلومات الذي رصفها الكاتب في هذا العمل مذهلة وكذلك مكائد الكر والفر. تستحق القراءة وأيضاً تستحق أن تدرس في الكليات الحربية "أتراني أبالغ"

  • Jocelyn
    2018-07-30 18:47

    Il est le héro nationale de l'Albanie, Skanderbeg a tenu tête à la plus grande machine de guerre de son époque: l'empire Ottoman. Il a pu mener ses troupes à resister contre l'envahisseur. Ce livre relate, de façon romancé, la première tentative Islamiste de saisir la citadelle de l'homme de guerre albanais. Une histoire captivante et qui donne le goût d'en savoir plus sur ce pays trop méconnu.

  • Cristian
    2018-08-19 20:56

    Kadare scrive, con “I tamburi della pioggia” un romanzo epico. Si tratta, tuttavia, di un’epica molto particolare, e nella quale, spesso fa uso di modalità a mio parere inattese, considerato anche che si tratta di un romanzo di quasi quarant’anni fa.L’inattesoPrimo elemento inatteso: l’eroe, Scanderbeg, di fatto non compare mai. Si parla di lui per sentito dire, dagli altri. Addirittura, la resistenza di Kruja e l’eroismo di Scanderbeg vengono raccontati prevalentemente dalla punto di vista del nemico. Kadare ci fa raccontare dagli ottomani l’eroismo degli albanesi, la loro resistenza, il loro coraggio, la loro forza e al tempo stesso la loro sofferenza e la loro disperazione.Perché? Perché non porre il focus dentro alle mura di Kruja? Perchè la narrazione ne guadagna in potenza, forse. Perché lui stesso, Kadare, è di parte, e quindi partecipante. E ha forse avuto bisogno di uno sguardo distaccato. Ma certo, questa scelta imprime forza, potenza al messaggio.Altro elemento inatteso è il punto di vista. Sempre in cambiamento. Chi è il protagonista dei “Tamburi”? Nessuno. Scanderbeg? Forse, ma non compare, nella narrazione. Viene addirittura citato saltuariamente, e quasi solo nella seconda parte. Chi è il protagonista? Il popolo di Kruja che resiste? Kadare riserva ai resistenti poche parole, tra un capitolo e l’altro, in cui spesso ci raccontano cose che gli ottomani hanno già detto.Forse il protagonista è la guerra, con le sue violenze e i suoi dolori. Ma Kadare, a mio parere, va più in là. Kadare ci parla dell’elemento umano. Di ciò che è umano.L’umanoE lo fa in più parti del testo. Ci racconta, ad esempio, la folle, triste festa prima dell’attacco alla città fortificata. Ci racconta di un poeta che diventa cieco, di uomini che muoiono e di giovani donne rapite.Ma c’è un punto in cui la poetica di Kadare spiazza e colpisce per la profonda umanità.Gli ottomani si accorgono che gli assalti alla cittadella fortificata risultano vani per la forza con la quale essa resiste. Decidono allora di scavare una galleria per vanificare le difese passando dal sottosuolo. Gli assediati albanesi, però, si accorgono di questo espediente e fanno saltare la galleria, bloccando all’interno un gruppo di ottomani, il quale ha come unico orizzonte quello di aspettare la morte. In questo momento di attesa dell’inevitabile, c’è chi sente il bisogno di raccontare la propria vita, quasi a fissarla prima che essa si concluda.«Non mi ascolti? Piangi? Comunque, ti ho raccontato la mia vita. Mi piacerebbe dirti qualche altro particolare. Ascoltami, se ti interessa. A ogni modo, non mi offenderò.»La tecnicaIn questo libro, c’è anche lo scontro tra la tecnica e l’eroismo. Gli ottomani sperimentano contro Kruja il cannone più potente al mondo.«È la prima volta nella storia dell’umanità che vengono impiegati simili cannoni. [...] In confronto al loro boato, un terremoto sembrerà una ninnananna.»E questa tecnica spaventa. Spaventa anche gli stessi artefici. Sarugia, l’ingegnere turco che ha inventato il cannone più potente al mondo, narra del suo maestro Saruhanli, ora rinchiuso perchè rifiutatosi di “ingrandire le bocche di fuoco”. Un obiettore di coscienza. Lo stesso Saruhanli dice: “Se lo ingrandiamo ancora […] il cannone diventerà un’arma terribile, che decimerà il genere umano.Alla tecnica degli ottomani viene contrapposta la strategia, l’intelligenza di Scanderbeg, che fiacca lo sterminato esercito turco con attacchi notturni e repentini ripiegamenti.Kadare, con il suo “I tamburi della pioggia”, sembra sfidarci. Ci racconta in anticipo gli orrori delle guerre che abbiamo conosciuto in questi anni.È il potere, la forza dell’allegoria. Wu Ming 1, in New Italian Epic, ci dice che “l’allegoria è un espediente retorico. La parola deriva dall’accostamento di due termini greci, allos (altro) ed egorein (parlare in pubblico). “Parlare d’altro”, o “un altro parlare”. Dire una cosa per dirne un’altra. Raccontare una storia che in realtà è un’altra storia, perché i personaggi e le loro azioni sostituiscono altri personaggi e azioni, oppure personificano astrazioni, concetti, virtù morali.Si dice che Kadare volesse costruire un’allegoria della resistenza della piccola Albania all’imperialismo stalinista. Negli anni in cui Kadare scriveva I tamburi, c’era la paura che l’Unione Sovietica replicasse nel Paese delle Aquile quanto già visto in Ungheria e Cecoslovacchia.Il libro parla, in realtà, della resistenza della città all’esercito ottomano guidato da Tursun Pascià, e dell’eroismo di Scanderbeg, che dall’esterno sosteneva la resistenza della cittadina con assalti notturni (e non solo) per fiaccare e battere il nemico.Alla fine, dopo aver provato ad assaltare la città, ad invaderla passando attraverso un galleria scavata di nascosto, ad avvelenarla con topi infetti, a prenderla per sete tagliando l’acquedotto, i turchi si devono arrendere alle prime piogge autunnali, e rimandare il loro intento all’anno successivo. Torneranno, in realtà, per ben venticinque volte: tanti sono gli anni che resistette la piccola Albania all’invasione ottomana.Vi è un passaggio epico, che riconosce il valore della resistenza degli albanesi, vista dai suoi avversari. A parlare è l’intendente capo.«Ogni primavera […] al rinascere del verde, torneremo in queste regioni. La terrà tremerà sotto i passi delle nostre truppe. Le valli verranno incendiate e tutto ciò che vi cresce o vi erge sarà ridotto in cenere. La prospera economia di questo paese sarà rovinata; e da allora essi pronunceranno la parola ‘turco’ per mettere paura ai bambini.E tuttavia […] se non riusciremo a vincerli questa volta, alla nostra prima campagna, alla seconda avremo bisogno, per riuscirvi, del doppio delle forze, e alla terza del triplo, e così via. Allora, anche se li vinceremo, non li sottometteremo mai. Attaccandoli, colpendoli senza pietà, irrompendo su di loro con le nostre innumerevoli armate, […] avremo fatto loro, involontariamente, un gran bene. […] Avremo creduto di dare loro la morte mentre con le nostre mani li rendevamo immortali.»L’unico modo per riuscire a batterli, dirà altrove, sarà quello di costruire moschee, mettere loro i costumi turchi e daro loro nomi turchi. L’invasione culturale. L’unico modo per mettere in ginocchio un popolo.Questa la storia.Poi c’è la guerra. Crudele, cruenta. Che non risparmia nessuno. Assediati ed assedianti, ad un certo punto, paiono uniti in una danza di morte che non risparmia nemmeno i villaggi attorno alla città. Kadare ne narra gli orrori più estremi, come ad esempio il rapimento di alcune adolescenti albanesi, per sfamare le voglie dei soldati. Non sopravviveranno alla prima sera, tanti saranno gli uomini che le prenderanno.E alle donne, Kadare, dedica molti pensieri, in questa storia al maschile.I turchi, quando parlano delle donne albanesi, dicono: «Spoglieremo delle vesti bianche e impudiche le loro donne e le loro fanciulle per rivestirle del nobile manto nero benedetto dalla religione. Ne copriremo con un velo i volti e gli occhi pieni di malizia […]. Ne faremo curvare le teste indocili sotto l’autorità maritale, come prescrive il santo Corano […]. A poco a poco, anno dopo anno, i loro costumi cadranno come i fiori dei meli. Esse si adatteranno alle nostre usanze, vi si abitueranno anzi al punto che, se mai un giorno, Dio non voglia, dovessimo abbandonare questi luoghi, durerebbero molta fatica a rompere coni nostri costumi».Una storia di epica, di eroismo, e di umanità, raccontata in un linguaggio che stupisce per modernità, e che narra la resistenza di un popolo che è la storia di tutti i popoli, di tutte le resistenze. (Cristian Fabbi, Albanianews, 10 maggio 2010)

  • Scott
    2018-07-31 17:52

    I wasn't sure about this novel as I began it. The writing of this translation was at first off-putting to me, but either it grew on me or it changed. I ended up deeply immersed in the novel--a fictional story of a fifteenth century Ottoman siege of an Albanian fortress, told mostly from the perspectives of Turkish characters ranging from the commander-in-chief to women in the harem. What soon emerges is that this is more than just a compelling story from the past, but a reflection on the present. I first noticed this in the accounts of the dysfunctional war council where traditionalists vie with modern scientific experts. Then the middle chapter--a horrifying episode I won't spoil--fully engaged me to the skill of Kadare.The excellent afterword explains how Kadare was speaking to the contemporary situation in late 1960's Maoist Albania: "all these details make the Ottoman world, ostensibly the very image of Albania's Other, merge into an evocation of the People's Republic that Kadare could not possibly tackle directly. In a magical way that perhaps only great writers can achieve, Kadare's Turks are at one and the same time the epitome of what we are not, and a faithful representation of what we have become. The Siege is therefore not a simple transposition or blending of medieval and modern history, but a complex symbol of a divided and suffering nation besieged by itself."

  • Wendelle So
    2018-08-13 16:43

    fictional account of the Ottoman attempt of invasion of Albania, written by a native Albanian from the viewpoint of the Ottoman soldiers duty-bound to expand their realm. It was beautifully and meticulously written, and through this book one can get a sense of life in military camp during that period-- long stretches of boredom and doubt relieved only by a tagging cultural performer of poetry or dance, and short-lived sudden assaults that end with a lot of casualties. However, a huge and unignorable part of this novel is what I suppose is a realistic account of the treatment of women during that time. Whether wife or war captive, women are treated as animals for sexual exploitation, to be caught and ogled, owned and used, stripped and raped. These parts of the book can turn any stomach and makes me grateful that I have escaped that epoch. If mass rape is a function of war then that in itself is an argument towards turning to the better angels of our nature.

  • Thomas Hübner
    2018-08-02 14:09

    http://www.mytwostotinki.com/?p=434Albania in the middle of the 15th century. Gjergj Kastrioti, called Skanderbeg, is resisting the advance of the Ottoman armies and is fighting a kind of hit-and-run guerrilla war from his fortresses in the Accursed Mountains. This is the historical backdrop of the novel The Siege by the Albanian author Ismail Kadare, a permanent candidate for the Novel Prize and Winner of the Man Booker International Prize.A huge force of the Ottoman army is advancing to this remote and not yet completely subdued province with the task to conquer one of the biggest fortresses that is still resisting the at that time most powerful army in the world.The Pasha that is leading the expedition force knows what is at stake for him: a failure to seize the fortress in summer would be considered as a complete failure of his by the Sultan. Not only would it be necessary to abort the siege at the begin of the rainy season, for the Pasha it would mean also personal disgrace and drastic consequences - in the best case early retirement, but more probably a death sentence after his return to the capital.Kadare tells us the story from two different perspectives. The main narrator is a young chronicler whose task it is to write the official account of the expedition and siege. The chronicler, an intelligent but inexperienced person has therefore (almost) always access to any meetings of the war council, where the military leaders discuss with the Pasha the right strategy and next steps of the siege.Important for the chronicler is especially his growing friendship with the Quartermaster, a kind of Chief Logistics Officer, who is very friendly and frank with him and is opening his eyes for the difficult task that such a mission including so many people is imposing on the logistics. Basic things about which we rarely read in the history books that tell only of the deeds of "great men", are of crucial importance. Without a proper system of latrines, no triumph in any battle. We also understand, as the story advances, that the Quartermaster has an agenda too. He wants to be depicted in a positive light for posterity, and he is doubting also (like many others) the abilities of the Pasha as a leader, though he is voicing his reservations in the most indirect way.A siege of a fortress on that scale was an extraordinary undertaking in the 15th century. It required already a very high level of organization, specialization and division of labor. We have the simple soldiers and the medics, experts for artillery, the janissaries, elite soldiers of the Sultan, the raiders (akinzhis), the infantry (azabs), the cavalry, and other specialized and rivaling groups, the "volunteers" (people who join in the hope to get a part of the booty), but also exorcists, soothsayers, spell casters, dream interpreters, and many other important crafts.Each chapter that is written by the young Ottoman chronicler is mirrored by a short chapter that is told by an unnamed Albanian chronicler who is inside the fortress. The Albanians pray for an early begin of the rainy season, which seems to be the only possible rescue. (Or an attack of the myth Skanderbeg, who is hiding somewhere in the mountains.) So, "the drums of rain" - also the planned original title of the book, and also the name under which The Siege is published in French - are dreaded by the Pasha, but longed-for by the Albanians.Since the fortress is well-protected by a sophisticated system of walls, and since there is also enough food and water inside the fortress, it proves more difficult as anticipated by the invaders to take it. Several attempts to storm the fortress in a frontal assault, supported by the newly cast cannon, fail and cause many casualties. A success at all costs must be achieved, and so the Pasha decides to follow a cunning plan: secretly he lets his soldiers build a tunnel that should lead directly to the middle of the fortress and should enable a surprise attack and the opening of the gates from the inside for a huge wave of attackers...Regarding the technical details of the siege, Kadare has made extensive use of Marin Barleti's chronicle about the siege of Shkodra. But The Siege is more than a historical novel: it was written shortly after the invasion of Prague 1968 by the Warsaw Pact states. It is therefore obvious that the book contains also some very interesting comments on the situation after the invasion of Prague.One message that Kadare wanted to send out is possibly: Albania will resist any attempt to invade the country (the paranoid dictator Enver Hoxha built therefore hundreds of thousands of small bunkers - fortresses en miniature).On the other hand, and this is also fairly obvious, the victory of the besieged (the invaders have to withdraw at the beginning of the rainy season and after the death of the Pasha) in the novel is only a temporary one. We can easily assume that a new, bigger army with even more frightful weapons will come back again next year - and from the history books we know the outcome of this process. Therefore Kadare's message in this novel is - like in most of his books - very ambiguous.What is additionally interesting about the novel are the countless calculated and intentional anachronisms it contains. To name just a few: There are show trials, the victims are sentenced to slave labor in the tunnel. And the only possible friend and ally in the outside world (in the book it is the Republic of Venice) plays a double game, because it is trading with and equipping the enemy of their (Christian) brothers, just for the profit."Great massacres always give birth to great books",says the Quartermaster to the chronicler quite at the beginning of The Siege. That may indeed be true. The Siege is a brilliant historical novel.

  • Dana Kraft
    2018-08-05 16:55

    This is the first book I've ready by Kadare and I enjoyed everything about it. I liked that the characters were generally not the ones doing the actual fighting, although in many ways they were still risking their lives in other ways. Interesting to think about how this could represent the situation in Albania in the late 60's. A couple of things I'll remember:- Towards the end of the siege, the 'architect' is called away to the capital. They then receive instructions from the capital on "the new war cries to be uttered during the assault." Made me laugh.- quote from the Pasha's harem "Lord, why can't they just stop with what they've got."