“I have a class theory of literature,” Disch once explained. “I come from the wrong neighborhood to sell to The New Yorker. No matter how good I am as an artist. “And it isn’t just Camp Archimedes. It’s the whole universe. The whole goddamned universe is a fucking concentration camp.” Mordecai rolled back into the pile. In this chillingly plausible work of speculative fiction, Thomas M. Disch imagines an alternate s in which America has declared war on the rest of.

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He’s like the jolly fat man he describes concenhration as obeseand even when he’s feeling other moods, his underlying personality is still there. In recent years, Disch had turned to ironically moralized horror novels like The BusinessmanThe MDThe Priest and The Sub in which the nightmare of American suburbia is satirized through the terrible things that happen when the magical gives people the chance to do what they really really want.

It was very depressing and morbid, but still a fantastic and chillingly interesting book concenrtation read through. Someone has something insightful to say about venereal disease and philosophy of mind and his name isn’t David Cronenberg!

Disch doesn’t show his hand, or even his prose, right away. Dec 18, James rated it really liked it Shelves: Was I supposed to know there were clues and that I was reading a mystery book?

That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s Flowers for Algernon has become a minor classic, and, thanks to the movie, even people who haven’t read it often know the story. I am uneasy about his treatment, really uneasy about picking such a theme and coming up with a happy ending.

Even the damned are reverent at that alter. Joseph Bottum wrote of him quite fondly for The Weekly Standardand an article in the Boston Review praised in his first book, But most of it’s not written like that.


Wonderfully macabre and strangely funny. There’s some question how much the author is faithfully writing from the point of view of a self-indulgent literary figure and how much the author is actually indulging in being a self-indulgent literary figure.

This topic is important to me in part because of my familiarity with Vladimir Nabokov’s postmodern novel Pale Fire for which the issue is paramount, but while thinking about that book my view of the status of other narratives was called into question. I think seven hundred wins in the you-know-what sweepstakes. Unfortunately Camp Concentration has no pictures. A strain of syphilis having been isolated concfntration enhanced, when injected in humans the result is a slow fisch drastic improvement in memory, insight, and all things intelligence.

Yet, I did not follow the thinking all them much. Ubik Dick, Philip K. HarperCollins Distribution Services Availability: Dec 07, Sam rated it really liked it Recommends it for: It was a very short novel that felt much longer in reading. The plot simple enough to fully concentratoon the weight, it is truly cerebral read. Preview — Camp Concentration by Thomas M.

Camp Concentration

The landscapes of his interior world will elicit only an agreeable amount of terror. Sachetti is a jailed conscientious objector, a “conchie” who finds himself transferred from a federal prison to the luxurious Camp Archimedes.

The State of the Art Ballard, J. One of most engaging things about the book is the way the story is narrated. A few passages are self-indulgent. Talk about a book that makes you doubt yourself! An expanded version vamp the Vietnam War seems to be underway. Does he mean anybody killed by these bombs were innocent victims?

I think you know.

Camp Concentration by Thomas M Disch

The book’s narrator, you see, is a poet, and he casually deploys scores of allusions, some of which I recognized and others I couldn’t follow. The same appears largely true of the other prisoners, although our narrator clearly takes relatively little interest in other people much of the time. Yup, we’ve got those. This extravagant plot offers a perfect set-up for Disch, who has an excuse for inserting conversations and observations on almost any sphere of the intellectual life into Sacchetti’s journal entries.


As a conscientious objector you have not only surrendered your rights but also your humanity. Also, this book has single-handedly expanded my vocabulary more than any other this year.

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There, he learns that the other prisoners are being experimented on and is asked to keep a journal of what he observes. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a worse book – just that it’s taking more risks, and not trying as hard to be accessible.

As conventration Algernon, it’s a diary; this time, the diary is being kept by Louis Sacchetti, a poet and conscientious objector who is assigned to the project with the brief of reporting on progress from a literary perspective. Algernon is a tragedy; CC is a black comedy, and often a rather horrifying one. Just ckncentration moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. Little does he know that the prison officials will subject any prisoner they want to any torture they want.

Ultimately the guards are more real and enduring figures than the inmates. If there is a literary side to science fiction, Thomas Disch is standing on the horizon holding Camp Concentrationhis creation, in the air. I find that it isn’t easy to run across books by Thomas Disch, he’s a fairly obscure pulp scifi author.