Sunday, September 14, 2008

"What would Jesus NOT do?"... [That I would do!]

“What you’re getting here is a stupid story about a stupid little boy. A stupid true life story about nobody you’d ever want to meet."

This is how Chuck Palahniuk begins his tale of Victor Mancini, the sex-addict, parasitic scam anti-hero who ironically forms great intimacy with the reader. Victor’s close examining of sex makes us look closely again at who we are, what we seek, and why we do so. Owing much to Lacan and his psychology, Choke introduces an anti-hero who does his best to get at the missing object of his life. The very missing object and goal that, as Lacan says, is impossible to find. However the individual is doomed to seek this object until his/her death.

In Choke the protagonist Victor Mancini, is a restless and angry anti-hero who is completely alienated from culture, religion, morality, and any possible form of structure and discipline. The only outlet, from which he can seek revenge at society and finally reach freedom of thought, is sex. Victor is a sex-addict whose only jouissance is his addiction. Behind its personal and psychological veil, its intricate and angry characters, Choke is also an American Beauty: a dark and sordid parody on Americanism.

Choke is Palahniuk’s first novel after Fight Club and it sure meets the expectations and the standards set by Palahniuk, this young and thoughtful American novelist. I am really encouraged to go on and read his last novel, Snuff, published in May. I’ll have my say later on.


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