For many, The Atrocity Exhibition is J.G. Ballard’s most important work. It reads like an instruction manual in how to disrupt mass media and. Written from , The Atrocity Exhibi- tion is Ballard’s most concentrated book—a prophetic masterpiece. Not since James Joyce and. William S. The Atrocity Exhibition [J. G. Ballard, William Gaminara] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. A prophetic and experimental masterpiece by.

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Suffering from a mental breakdown, the protagonist—a doctor at a mental hospital—surrenders to a world of psychosis. Not for everyone, not for the squeamish, not for those looking for a narrative or story, not for the unadventurous, not for the wholesome, and not, I’m sorry to say, for the ehxibition.

Science Fiction Eye magazine article on Atrocity Exhibition

It might be the copy you have. Babel Delany, Samuel R. The story was later adapted into a film of the same name by Canadian director David Cronenberg.

There is no plot, climax, or conclusion I give Ballard credit for reaching for extreme effects, but the payoff never arrives. A wide choice of impact modes was available, including roll-over, roll-over followed by head-on collision, multiple pile-ups and motorcade attacks.

One can sense his glee when describing obscenity charges against this book that led to prosecution in the UK. He wonders whether future visitors from outer space will consider swimming pools as “votive offerings to the distant sea.

I’m convinced of Ballard’s skill, no doubt — he writes with a cold clear edge — and glad I tried this book, but I’m not keeping it, and I think Ballard’s imagination is a bizarre and unpleasant place science as pornography?! A sloppy summary of this book would be that the main character, Traven, is sliding towards a mental breakdown and is on a quest in the interim to recreate the deaths of iconic media celebrities such as JFK in a way that “makes sense.


Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. In this bewildering world, violent imagery has fatefully infiltrated the amphitheater of the body and the libido; car crashes become potent sexual fantasies. Okay I get it now: The first reports referred to the probability that the emissions from the quasar provided evidence of an intelligence at work. That’s some weak junk, if you know what I mean!

Seriously, you will be immersing your head if not your heart into a strangely dis-associative mindspace, made even more disturbing and poignant by its now-fixed place in the past.

This site uses cookies. Ambit Magazine – Of course, Ballard has his explanations, invariably placed in the accompanying notes to exhibigion text. Sex and death; celebrity, thermonuclear war, and auto-accidents; architecture, advertising, mass media, traumas physical and psychological.

atrodity View all 3 comments. Inner and outer landscapes seem to merge a Ballardian specialityas the ultimate goal of the protagonist is to start World War III”though not in any conventional sense” — a war that will be fought entirely within his own mind. By text, I mean anything from a billboard to a peanut butter jar to a film to a book proper.

A number of women appear and reappear throughout the book. He began to prepare for departure.

Traven is fairly typical of most of Ballard’s characters in that he is basically an empty jacket exhibitioon around. The book was originally published in the UK in by Jonathan Cape. A scenario results from an attempt to describe in more or less detail some hypothetical sequence of events.


A pity, I feel, since the sexual imagination is unlimited in scope and metaphoric power, and can never be successfully repressed. Seeking his sanity, he casts atrkcity in a number of roles: What slasher films are to cinema, J. Ballard—a Signed Copy Includes: The mannered, droning voice that narrates the last section without the slightest waver or mistake is at least an exact replica of the one who started.


Old inked price at upper right corner of front free endpaper, else a fine copy in near fine dust jacket with light shelf wear at head and tail of spine panel and corners. Anatomy of Wonder Many other characters explore predilections on the boundaries. But the amiable old duffer who occupied the White House was a very different person from the often sinister figure I described inwhen the present piece was first published.

Knowing our shared taste in literature, I would venture to guess that she doesn’t think much of Ballard, but I meant in a psychiatric sense. For the reports claim to refer to the responses of, amongst others, mental patients, witnesses of the Kennedy assassination, soldiers, housewives, students, and ezhibition children. It would seem at first that the qualities would be mutually exclusive — how could something provoke both incomprehension and arousal?

When they are collected together and published as a novel it looks like an opportunity lost. But for all that, is it worth reading? Perhaps you are not supposed teh think about plot, but just let the nasty imagery float across your brain.

But she is also a doctor, with the detachment that such an occupation implies, as well as having become the lover of Koester, a research student cf.

As I read I was reminded of Steven Moore’s contention that novels are exercises in adapting different forms of rhetoric to a narrative. None of them is to be identified by any distinguishable physical characteristics, although the implication is that they are all reasonably attractive. In the late s and early s Ballard focused on a James Graham “J.