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The Heart of the Matter (1948)

por Graham Greene

Outros autores: Ver a secção outros autores.

MembrosCríticasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
4,479751,902 (3.91)179
In this widely acclaimed modern classic, Graham Greene delves deep into character to tell the dramatic, suspenseful story of a good man's conflict between passion and faith. A police commissioner in a British-governed, war-torn West African state, Scobie is bound by the strictest integrity and sense of duty both for his Colonial responsibilities and for his wife, whom he deeply pities but no longer loves. Passed over for a promotion, he is forced to borrow money in order to send his despairing wife away on a holiday. When in her absence he develops a passion for a young widow, the scrupulously honest Catholic finds himself giving way to deceit and dishonor. Enmeshed in love and intrigue, he will betray everything he believes in, with tragic consequences. The Heart of the Matter is one of Graham Greene's most enduring and tragic novels.… (mais)
  1. 10
    On Chesil Beach por Ian McEwan (akfarrar)
    akfarrar: Another serious book with marriage at the heart of it and the tug of war between being an individual and uniting with an 'other'. Both deal with a generation of people on the edge of change and with matters both earthly and spiritual.
  2. 10
    Morte d'Urban por J. F. Powers (christiguc)
  3. 00
    The Mission Song por John le Carré (John_Vaughan)
    John_Vaughan: The two books reflect the supposedly 'catholic' viewpoint so often attributed to Greene. The Mission Song is from a catholic African's view.
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Inglês (68)  Holandês (3)  Dinamarquês (2)  Hebraico (1)  Catalão (1)  Todas as línguas (75)
Mostrando 1-5 de 75 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
Unlike Anna Karenina, I finished this drivel hoping there would be something worthwhile in the end. There wasn't. I wanted to smack everyone for being so appallingly stupid and I couldn't wait for Scobie to kill him self and get it over with. I kept muttering "Get on with it." to the book. ( )
  KittyCunningham | Apr 26, 2021 |
El comandante de policía Henry Scobie y su mujer Louise viven desde hace años junto a otros funcionarios británicos en una remota colonia de África Occidental. Un entorno asfixiante que todos están deseando abandonar, especialmente Louise. Henry, por su parte, es un hombre íntegro que acepta estoicamente su situación y su matrimonio con una mujer por la que siente compasión más que cariño y a la que, por encima de todo, procura hacer feliz. Pero con la llegada de una inesperada visitante, los firmes principios de Henry se verán puestos a prueba.

Publicada en 1948 e inspirada en la experiencia del propio autor en Sierra Leona durante la guerra, esta novela se convirtió rápidamente en un best seller y está considerada como una de sus mejores obras. El revés de la trama ahonda en los temas predilectos de Greene: los claroscuros de la naturaleza humana, la traición a los demás y a uno mismo, el fracaso, la fe, el sacrificio y el amor llevado hasta sus últimas consecuencias. Intensa y conmovedora, es sin duda una novela inolvidable.
  ArchivoPietro | Nov 13, 2020 |
Rated: B
Wonderful literature / writing. Fascinating descriptions and dialogue. Depressing story of pure futility. ( )
  jmcdbooks | Oct 26, 2020 |
Sierra Leone, segona guerra mundial: un subinspector casat però no enamorat de la seva esposa, amb un sentit extrem del deure; una esposa insatisfeta; una amant exigent; tot això el porta a acceptar un xantatge, per bé d'elles, però ell que havia estat sempre un home íntegre, s'adona que el xantatge és el seu final.
El llibre m'ha sembla que té un argument com de film, fins i tot els personatges estan descrits com narrant una pel·lícula, tot i que sempre se centra en el pensament del protagonista.
La traducció flueix. ( )
  Montserratmv | Aug 20, 2020 |
"Point me out the happy man and I will point you out either extreme egotism, selfishness, evil--or else an absolute ignorance."

The action takes place in an unnamed British Colony coastal town of West Africa (almost certainly Sierra Leone where Greene served as an intelligence officer) during World War II and centres around Henry Scobie, a police Deputy Commissioner and a long-time resident in the colony. He is known for his scrupulous honesty and everyone expects him to be promoted to Commissioner when the present incumbant retires.

When Scobie is passed over for the promotion his wife Louise, who has struggled to be accepted within the expatriate community, takes it as a personnel slight and begs him to help her leave and settle in South Africa alone instead of living with his failure. Unable to raise the necessary funds to facilitate Louise's move legitimately Scobie ignores his principles and borrows the money from a Syrian black marketeer, Yusef. Scobie is initially relieved to find himself on his own after Louise's departure, until one day he falls in love with the survivor of a shipwreck. When Louise returns to the colony and Yusuf excerpts pressure on to him to assist in his nefarious business dealing, Scobie is forced to take a good hard look at himself with shattering results.

The novel is narrated in the third person limited style so that we see the action through Scobie's eyes. However occasionally the author switches the narrative to that of Wilson, a spy sent to the colony by Britain to try and stem the flow of diamonds smuggled out of the colony and suitor for Louise's affections. Right from the outset the reader is left with a sense of foreboding and we know that things will end badly for Scobie.

Scobie’s only daughter died in Britain several years prior to the events whilst he was in Africa and he is obviously still grieving. Louise is controlling and self-centred apparently determined to make his existence even more miserable by making him feel guilty. There is little action in this novel instead there is an almost laser-like focus on the inner turmoil within the main character, in particular as he struggles with his religious beliefs. Scobie only wants to protect his wife from hurt but when he seeks peace and understanding in the arms of a young mistress he only finds moral confusion. This confusion is really the central theme as readers are asked to rethink our place in God’s eyes, and whether or not our words match our deeds.

This is not an easy read and for me not a particularly enjoyable one. Perhaps because I'm not a Catholic I found it hard to sympathise with Scobie, rather than finding him honest and reliable I found him weak and easily swayed. He portends to love the two women but was I unconvinced (as was his wife) that he really loved anyone other than himself. Equally I found none of the other characters, with the exception of Yusuf, particularly believable or likeable although that isn't normally a pre-requisite. Overall I found this an OK read rather than a memorable one. ( )
  PilgrimJess | Jul 4, 2020 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 75 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
A policeman's lot is not a happy one. The white (and dark) man's burden must always be heavy. And man's debt to man will be forever in arrears -- from West Africa to the West End, from Brooklyn to Bucharest. Generations of novelists have wrestled with these melancholy truisms. It is a pleasure to report that Graham Greene, in "The Heart of the Matter," has wrestled brilliantly with all three -- and scored three clean falls. Mr. Greene (as a well-earned public knows) is a profound moralist with a technique to match his purpose. From first page to last, this record of one man's breakdown on a heat-drugged fever-coast makes its point as a crystal-clear allegory -- and as an engrossing novel.
 
One thing I admire with the Heart of the Matter is the introduction of several other characters that in a way or another adds up to the genuine plot. They all seem to have a story to tell and each story affects and adds up to the conflict that has been surfacing within the inner self of Scobie.

adicionada por John_Vaughan | editarHelium, UK, John Louie Ramos (Jul 9, 2011)
 

» Adicionar outros autores (23 possíveis)

Nome do autorPapelTipo de autorObra?Estado
Greene, Grahamautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Puchwein, ErichTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Wood, JamesIntroduçãoautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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Outside the rest-house he stopped again. The lights inside would have given an extraordinary impression of peace if one hadn't known, just as the stars on this clear night gave also an impression of remoteness, security, freedom. If one knew, he wondered, the facts, would one have to feel pity even for the planets? if one reached what they called the heart of the matter?
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In this widely acclaimed modern classic, Graham Greene delves deep into character to tell the dramatic, suspenseful story of a good man's conflict between passion and faith. A police commissioner in a British-governed, war-torn West African state, Scobie is bound by the strictest integrity and sense of duty both for his Colonial responsibilities and for his wife, whom he deeply pities but no longer loves. Passed over for a promotion, he is forced to borrow money in order to send his despairing wife away on a holiday. When in her absence he develops a passion for a young widow, the scrupulously honest Catholic finds himself giving way to deceit and dishonor. Enmeshed in love and intrigue, he will betray everything he believes in, with tragic consequences. The Heart of the Matter is one of Graham Greene's most enduring and tragic novels.

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