ZORBA THE GREEK. Pages · · KB · 2, Downloads ·English. vios The New Testament in Greek IV (New Testament Tools and Studies). 69 downloads Views KB Size Report. This content was uploaded by our users and we assume good faith they have the permission to share this book. NIKOS KAZANTZAKIS ZORBA THE GREEK 'Throughout my life my greatest benefactors have been my dreams and my travels; very few men, living or dead.
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Identifier: NikosKazantzakisZorbaTheGreek. Identifier-ark: ark://t7tnb. Ocr: ABBYY FineReader Ppi: Scanner: Internet. First published in , Zorba the Greek, is, on one hand, the story of a Greek working man named Zorba, a passionate lover of life, the unnamed narrator who . Ebook Zorba the Greek currently available for review only, if you need complete ebook Zorba the Greek please fill out in our databases Download here >>.
Kaplan, R. Teach Me to Dance! A Journey through History, — London: Papermac. Karapanagiotis, L. Kazantzakis, N. Athens: Arhaios Ekdotikos Oikos Dim. New York: Simon and Schuster. Lachize, S. Lev, P. The Euro-American Cinema. Austin: University of Texas Press. The Fifties. Transforming the Screen — London: University of California Press.
Lydias, G. MacArthur, H. Kolonias ed. Mihalis Cacoyannis [Michael Cacoyannis], Athens: Kastaniotis. Studies in European Cinema 17 Monaco, P.
The Sixties, — Mouzelis, N. Modern Greece. Facets of Underdevelopment. London: Macmillan. Palaiologos, P. Papanikolaou, D. Oxford: Legenda. Ploritis, M. Psathas, D. Rohmer, E. Sarris, Andr. The American Cinema: Directors and Directions — Savvidis, G. Segrave, K. Foreign Films in America. A History. Jefferson, NC: McFarland. Sklar, R. Movie-made America. A Cultural History of American Movies. Sokou, R. Entyposeis kai kriseis. Solomon, Aubr.
Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press. Urry, J. The Tourist Gaze. London: Sage. My moustache and my hair were their real colour, black as a raven. I had all my thirty-two teeth, and when I got drunk I swallowed the hors-d'oeuvres first and then the dish. Yes, I enjoyed myself no end. But suddenly the devil took a hand in things.
A new revolution broke out in Crete. I peddled haberdashery from village to village in Macedonia, and instead of money I used to take cheese, wool, butter, rabbits and corn. Then I sold all that and made a double profit. In every village I came to at dark I knew where to spend the night. In every village there's always a tender-hearted widow, God bless her! I'd give her a reel of thread, or a comb, or a scarf - a black one, of 22 course, on account of the late-lamented - and I slept with her.
It didn't cost me much!
But, as I said before, the devil got mixed up in things and Crete took up arms again. We were now following the curve of a quiet sandy bay. The waves spread out here gently without breaking and only leaving a thin line of foam along the shore.
The clouds had broken up, the sun was shining, and the rugged contours of Crete became serene. Zorba turned round and gave me a mocking look. Well, I shan't! I don't like to, I'm ashamed. What sort of madness comes over us? Today I'm a bit more level-headed, and I ask myself: What sort of madness comes over us to make us throw ourselves on another man, when he's done nothing to us, and bite him, cut his nose off, tear his ear out, run him through the guts - and all the time, calling on the Almighty to help us!
Does it mean we want the Almighty to go and cut off noses and ears and rip people up? How could I stop to examine the whys and wherefores? To think things out properly and fairly, a fellow's got to be calm and old and toothless. When you're an old gaffer with no teeth, it's easy to say: "Damn it, boys, you mustn't bite! A man's a savage beast when he's young; yes, boss, a savage, man-eating beast! Now, what does the old owl have to say to that, eh? What ever can you know of the world? I became ashamed of my delicate hands, my pale face and my life which had not been bespattered with mud and blood.
There's one thing, though, I'd like to ask you. You must've gone through hundreds of books, perhaps you know the answer A funny sort of miracle which puzzles me. All that business - those lousy tricks, thefts and that slaughter of ours -1 mean of us rebels - all that brought Prince George to Crete. So, if we want liberty in this bad world, we've got to have all those murders, all those lousy tricks, have we? I tell you, If I began to go over all the bloody villainy and all the murders we did, you'd have your hair stand on end.
And yet, the result of all that, what's it been? Instead of wiping us out with a thunderbolt, God gives us liberty! I just don't understand! I could see that this problem had tormented him a lot and that he could not get to the bottom of it. Understand what? Tell him what? Either that what we call God does not exist, or else that what we call murders and 24 villainy is necessary for the struggle and for the liberation of the world I tried hard to find for Zorba another, simpler way of explaining it.
Say to yourself, Zorba, that the manure and muck is man and the flower liberty. Who's put such a seed in our entrails? And why doesn't this seed produce flowers from kindness and honesty? Why must it have blood and filth?
They sensed a quarrel and pricked up their ears. This disgusted Zorba. He lowered his voice. But what good would that do me?
I'd have to pay the breakages and go to a chemist and have my head bandaged.
And if God exists, well, it's far worse: we're bloody well done for! He must be peering at me from up there in the sky and bursting his sides with laughter. Have you ever seen a 25 whole people gone mad because they've seen their liberty? Ah, boss, then blind you were born and blind you'll die. If I live a thousand years, even if all that remains of me is a morsel of living flesh, what I saw that day I'll never forget! And if each of us could choose his paradise in the sky, according to his taste - and that's how it should be, that's what I call paradise - I'd say to the Almighty: 'Lord, let my paradise be a Crete decked with myrtle and flags and let the minute when Prince George set foot on Cretan soil last for centuries!
That'll do me. He raised his moustache, filled a glass to the brim with iced water and swallowed it in one gulp. Tell me!
A blackguard of a rebel who'd come from Macedonia with me - Yorga, they called him, a gallows' bird, a real swine, you know - well, he wept.
And then that miserly bastard pulls out his purse, empties onto his lap the gold coins he'd looted from the Turks and throws them into the air by handfuls! D'you see, boss, that's what liberty is! That's what liberty is, I thought. To have a passion, to amass pieces of gold and suddenly to conquer one's passion and throw the treasure to the four winds.
Free yourself from one passion to be dominated by another and nobler one. But is not that, too, a form of slavery? To sacrifice oneself to an idea, to a race, to God? Or does it mean that the higher the model the longer the tether of our 26 slavery? Then we can enjoy ourselves and frolic in a more spacious arena and die without having come to the end of the tether.
Is that, then, what we call liberty? Towards the end of the afternoon we berthed by the sandy shore and saw finely sifted white sand, oleanders still in flower, fig and carob trees, and, further to the right, a low grey hill without a tree, resembling the face of a woman resting. And beneath her chin, along her neck, ran the dark brown veins of lignite. An autumnal wind was blowing, frayed clouds were passing slowly over the earth and softening its contours with shadow. Other clouds were rising menacingly in the sky.
The sun appeared and disappeared, and the earth's surface was brightened and darkened like a living and perturbed face. I stopped for a moment on the sand and looked. A sacred solitude lay before me, deadly and yet fascinating, like the desert. The Buddhist song rose out of the very soil and found its way to the depths of my being. When, in my rags - without desires - shall I retire contented into the mountains?
When, seeing that my body is merely sickness and crime, age and death, shall I - free, fearless and blissful - retire into the forest?
When, oh when? And I stretched my arm towards the hill with the womanlike face. Zorba frowned without looking round. This isn't the time, boss,' he said. She's still pitching, the devil take her, like the deck of a ship.
Let's go to the village. Two barefooted urchins, as brown as Arabs, ran up and took charge of the luggage. A huge customs officer was smoking a hookah in the customs shed. He scrutinised us from out of the corner of his blue eyes, took a nonchalant glance at the bags, and shifted momentarily on his seat as if he was going to get up. But it was too much of an effort.
He slowly raised the hookah tube and said in a sleepy voice: 'Welcome! He winked with his olive-black eyes and said in a mocking tone: 'He's no Cretan. He's a lazy devil. Look, behind the gardens, in the ravine. A fine village, sir. Plenty of everything - carob trees, beans, grain, oil, wine. And down there in the sand, the earliest cucumbers, tomatoes, aubergines and water-melons in Crete.
It's the winds from Africa makes them swell. At night, in the orchard, you can hear them crackling and getting bigger. His head was still swimming. He spat. There's nothing more to fear! The earth was mixed with sand and shells, and here and there grew a tamarisk, a wild fig tree, a tuft of reeds, some bitter mullein.
The weather was sultry, the clouds were gathering lower and lower, the wind was dropping. We were passing by a great fig tree with a twisted double trunk which was beginning to grow hollow with age. One of the urchins stopped and with a jerk of the chin pointed to the old tree. On this Cretan soil, every stone, every tree has its tragic history.
Why that name? But her father wouldn't hear of it. The young lady wept, screamed and pleaded. The old man never changed his nine!
One night the young couple disappeared. The countryside was searched, but for one, two, three days, a whole week, they weren't to be found. Then they began to stink, so the stench was followed and they were found rotting beneath this fig tree, locked in each other's arms. You see, they found them through the stench. The sounds of the village could be heard.
Dogs began to bark, women to talk shrilly, cocks to announce the change in the weather. In the air floated the odour of grapes which came from the vats where arack was being distilled. As soon as we had rounded the sandy hill the little village came into sight. It seemed to be clambering up the side of the ravine.
Whitewashed terraced houses huddled together. Their open windows made dark patches, and they resembled whitened skulls jammed between the rocks. I caught up with Zorba. We'll act like serious business-men.
I'm the manager and you're the foreman. Cretans don't take things lightly. As soon as they've set eyes on you, they pick on anything queer, and give you a nickname. After that, you can't get rid of it. You run about like a dog with a saucepan tied to its tail.
Finally he said: 'Listen, boss, if there's a widow in the place, you've no need to fear. If there isn't She was swarthy, filthy, and had a stiff little black moustache. Then give me five drachmas! He looked round and said: 'Looks as if souls are cheap in these parts, boss! Five drachmas a soul! Some of them yelped, others made sounds like Klaxons, still others ran in front of us and looked at us with their big eyes full of amazement.
We arrived at the village square, where we found two huge white poplars surrounded by crudely carved trunks which served as seats.
But I did not have time to reply. From the door of the cafe and butcher's shop ran out five or six giants wearing dark-blue breeches with red waistbands. They shouted: 'Welcome, friends! Come in and have an arack.
It's still warm from the vat. The proprietor of the cafe-butchery, who was a brisk, tough, well-preserved old man, brought out chairs for us.
I asked where we might lodge. She's managed to avoid going on all the rocks you can think of, and now she's clung on to the last one here and has opened an inn. And she's got a parrot. How many? Well, she's widow of as many husbands. Get the idea? We were treated to a new round and the cafe proprietor brought it to us on a tray, together with barley-loaf, goat-cheese and pears.
They mustn't dream of going to madame's! They're going to spend the night right here! T've got no children. My house is big and there's plenty of room. Welcome to you! A beauty spot, from which sprang sow-bristles, adorned her chin. She was wearing a red-velvet ribbon round her neck, and her withered cheeks were plastered with mauve powder. A gay little lock of hair danced on her brow and made her look somewhat like Sarah Bernhardt in her old age playing L' Aiglon.
Life appeared all at once like a fairy-tale or the opening scene of The Tempest. We had just set foot on the island, soaked to the skin after an imaginary shipwreck.
We were exploring the marvellous coasts, and ceremoniously greeting the inhabitants of the place. This woman, Hortense, seemed to me to be the queen of the island, a sort of blonde and glistening walrus who had been cast up, half-rotting, on this sandy shore. Behind her appeared the numerous dirty, hairy faces radiating the general good humour of the people - or of Caliban - who gazed at the queen with pride and scorn.
Zorba, the prince in disguise, also stared at her, as if she were an old comrade, an old frigate who had fought on distant seas, who had known victory and defeat, her hatches battered in, her masts broken, her sails torn - and who now, scored with furrows which she had caulked with powder and cream, had retired to this coast and was waiting.
Surely she was waiting for Zorba, the captain of the thousand scars. And I was delighted to see these two actors meet at last in a Cretan setting which had been very simply produced and painted in a few broad strokes of the brush. Two beds, and no bugs. I should think not! There aren't! She was wearing thick sky-blue stockings and a pair of battered court-shoes with dainty silk bows. The devil take you! But, with great dignity, Dame Hortense was already going and opening up the way for us.
She smelt of powder and cheap soap. Zorba followed her, devouring her with his eyes. Take an eyeful of that, boss,' he confided. Blue lightning flickered over the mountain. Young girls, wrapped in their little white goat-skin capes, were hurriedly bringing back from pasture the family goats and sheep. The women, squatting in front of their hearths, were kindling the evening fire.
Zorba bit his moustache impatiently, without taking his eyes off the rolling buttocks of the woman. To hell with life! The jade's never done playing us tricks! The first was the shop where you could buy sweets, cigarettes, peanuts, lamp-wicks, alphabets, candles and benjamin. Four adjoining huts formed the dormitory. Behind, in the yard, were the kitchen, the wash-house, the hen-house and the rabbit hutches. Thick bamboos and prickly pears were planted in the fine sand all round.
The whole place smelled of the sea, excrement and urine. But, from time to time, Dame Hortense passed by and 33 the air changed its odour - as if someone had emptied a hairdresser's bowl under your nose. As soon as the beds were ready we retired and slept without a break till the morning.
I do not remember the dream I had, but I rose lightly and as fit as if I had come fresh from a dip in the sea. It was Sunday, the workmen were to come on Monday from neighbouring villages and begin work at the mine, so I had time this day to take a turn round the shores on which fate had cast me.
Dawn was hardly peeping through when I started out. I went past the gardens, followed the edge of the sea, hurriedly made my acquaintance with the water, earth and air of the spot, picked wild plants, and the palms of my hands became redolent with savory, sage and mint.
I climbed a hill and looked round. An austere countryside of granite and very hard limestone. Dark carob and silvery olive trees, figs and vines. In the sheltered hollows, orange groves, lemon and medlar trees; near the shore, kitchen gardens.
To the south, an expanse of sea, still angry and roaring as it came rushing from Africa to bite into the coast of Crete. Nearby, a low, sandy islet flushing rosy pink under the first rays of the sun. To my mind, this Cretan countryside resembled good prose, carefully ordered, sober, free from superfluous ornament, powerful and restrained.
It expressed all that was necessary with the greatest economy. It had no flippancy, nor artifice about it. It said what it had to say with a manly austerity. But between the severe lines one could discern an unexpected sensitiveness and tenderness; in the sheltered hollows the lemon and orange trees perfumed the air, and from the vastness of the sea emanated an inexhaustible poetry.
I came down from the little hill to the edge of the water. Chattering girls appeared with fichus as white as snow, long yellow boots, and skirts rucked up; they were going to mass 34 in the convent over there, gleaming a dazzling white by the sea.
I stopped. As soon as they noticed me, the girls' laughter ceased. At the sight of a strange man their expression became one of wild distrust. Their whole bearing from head to foot, was suddenly on the defensive, their fingers clutched nervously at their tightly buttoned blouses. Fear surged in their blood. For centuries the Corsairs had made sudden incursions on to the whole of the Cretan coast facing Africa, ravishing ewes, women and children. They bound them with their red belts, threw them into the bottoms of their ships and set sail to sell them in Algiers, Alexandria, Beirut.
For centuries the waters round these shores, festooned with black tresses, have resounded with lamentations. I watched these frightened girls advance, clinging together as if to form an impassable barrier.
It was an instinctive reaction, indispensable in earlier times and today repeated without reason. A bygone necessity dictated the rhythm of their movements. As the girls passed in front of me, I quietly stepped aside, smiling. And immediately, as if they suddenly felt that the danger they feared had passed centuries ago, and that they had awakened in our age of security, their faces lit up, the serried line of battle spread out and, all together, they bade me good-day in clear and light-hearted tones.
At the same time the merry, sportive bells of the distant convent filled the air with sounds of rejoicing. The sun had risen, the sky was clear. I crouched among the rocks, perched like a seagull on a ledge, and contemplated the sea. My body felt powerful, fresh and obedient. And my mind, following the waves, became itself a wave, unresisting, submissive to the rhythm of the sea.
Then my heart began to swell. Obscure, pleading and imperious voices rose within me. I knew who was calling to me. Whenever I was alone for a moment, this being cried out, in an anguish of horrible presentiments, transports and mad fears - waiting to be delivered by me.
I turned over the pages, reading a line here and there, or a tercet, and committing to memory the entire canto. Out of those fiery pages the damned rose howling. Half-way up the rocks, wounded souls sought to scale a precipitous mountainside. Higher still, the souls of the blessed moved among the emerald fields, like brilliant fireflies. I wandered from the highest to the lowest regions of the terrible house of destiny; I went freely about hell, purgatory and paradise, as if in my own dwelling.
I suffered, I awaited or tasted beatitude, carried away as I was by those superb verses. Suddenly I closed my Dante and looked out over the sea. A gull, its breast resting on the water, rose and fell with the waves, abandoning itself to them and enjoying the pleasures of abandonment.
A youth, sunburnt and bare-foot, appeared. Maybe he understood the pain they expressed, for his voice had begun to grow hoarse, like that of a cockerel.
For hundreds of years, Dante's verses have been sung in the poet's country. And just as love songs prepare boys and girls for love, so the ardent Florentine verses prepared Italian youths for the day of deliverance. From generation to generation, all communed with the soul of the poet and so transformed their slavery into freedom.
I heard a laugh behind me and at once fell from the Dan-tesque heights. I looked round and saw Zorba behind me, his whole face creased with laughter. The body's got a soul, too, have pity on it. Give it something to eat, boss, give it something; it's our beast of burden, you know. If you don't feed it, it'll leave you stranded in the middle o' the road.
But so that Zorba would not grumble I said: 'All right, I'm coming. The hours amongst the rocks had passed as time passes between lovers, like lightning.
Tomorrow we'll start work. I had to make some calculations. A little later he said: 'And why the devil d'you have to go down to the sea to make calculations? Pardon me, boss, for asking this question, but I don't understand. When I have to wrestle with figures, I feel I'd like to stuff myself into a hole in the ground, so I can't see anything. If I raise my eyes and see the sea, or a tree, or a woman - even if she's an old 'un damme if all the sums and figures don't go to blazes.
They grow wings and I have to chase 'em It all depends on the way you look at it. There are cases even wise old Solomon Look, 37 one day I had gone to a little village. An old grandfather of ninety was busy planting an almond tree. Two equally steep and bold paths may lead to the same peak. To act as if death did not exist, or to act thinking every minute of death, is perhaps the same thing.
But when Zorba asked me the question, I did not know. Let's talk of something else. Just now I'm thinking of the chicken and the pilaff sprinkled with cinnamon. My brain's steaming like the pilaff, Let's eat first, ballast up first, then we'll see. Everything in good time. In front of us now is the pilaff; let our minds become pilaff. Tomorrow the lignite will be in front of us; our minds must become lignite!
No half-measures, you know. The women were sitting in their doorways gossiping. The old men, leaning on their sticks, were silent. Under a pomegranate tree laden with fruit a little shrivelled old woman was delousing her grandson.
In front of the cafe an old man with a grave, concentrated expression and an aquiline nose was standing erect. He had a distinguished air. He was Mavrandoni, the village elder who had rented the lignite mine to us. He had called the previous evening at Dame Hortense's to take us to his house.
He said: 'It's a scandal for you to be staying at her hotel as if there were no men in the village.
We had refused. This had offended him, but he had not insisted. His servant said, as he unloaded his tiny ass: 'With the compliments of Captain Mavrandoni.
It's nothing much, he asked me to tell you, but it's meant well. Then he fell silent. Zorba's nostrils were quivering joyously. As soon as Dame Hortense saw us from the threshold she uttered a cry and ran into the kitchen. Zorba put the table in the yard under the leafless vine-arbour. He cut thick slices of bread, brought the wine and set the table. He looked round at me wickedly and pointed to the table. He had set for three people!
He hummed old love songs. Have a good time and the bird into the bargain.
You see, I'm doing things now as if I was going to die next minute. And I'm making it snappy, so I don't kick the bucket before I've had the bird! She lifted the pot and set it down in front of us. But she stood gaping. She had seen the three plates.
Crimson with pleasure, she looked at Zorba and blinked her sharp little periwinkle-blue eyes. Then, with extreme politeness, he turned to the lady and said: 'Beautiful nymph of the waves, we are shipwrecked and the sea has cast up us in your realm. Do us the honour, my siren, of sharing our meal!
She swayed gracefully, brushed against Zorba, then me, and ran, chuckling, to her room. Soon after she reappeared, twittering, flaunting her charms and dressed in her very best: an old shiny velvet dress, decorated with worn yellow braid. Her bodice remained hospitably open and on it she had pinned a full-blown artificial rose. In her hand she held the parrot's cage which she hung in the vine-arbour.
We made her sit between us, with Zorba to her right and me to her left. We all three set to ravenously. For a long time we did not utter a word. We were feeding the beast and slaking its thirst with wine. The food was soon changed into blood, the world became more beautiful, the woman at our sides became younger every minute, the lines in her face were disappearing. The parrot, hanging in front of us in his green jacket and yellow waistcoat, leaned forward to watch us.
He looked like some odd little fellow under a spell, or else the spirit of the old cabaret singer wearing a green-and-yellow dress. And above our heads the vine-arbour was suddenly covered with large bunches of black grapes. Zorba's eyes were rolling, he flung open his arms as if he wanted to embrace the whole world. Ah, boss, life's a rum thing. On your honour, are those grapes hanging there above our heads, or are they angels?
I don't know. Or else they're nothing at all, and nothing exists, neither chicken, nor siren, nor Crete! Speak, boss, speak, so I don't go right off my head! He had finished with the chicken and was beginning to look at Dame Hortense gluttonously. His eyes were ravishing her; they looked her up and down, slipped into her swelling bosom as if they touched her.
Our lady's little eyes were shining too; she liked the wine and had emptied several glasses of it. The mischievous demon in the wine had carried her back to the good old days. She became once more tender, merry and expansive.
She rose and bolted the outside door so that the villagers could not see her -' the barbarians', as she called them. He is about to begin reading his copy of Dante 's Divine Comedy when he feels he is being watched; he turns around and sees a man of around sixty peering at him through the glass door.
The man enters and immediately approaches him to ask for work. He claims expertise as a chef, a miner, and player of the santuri, or cimbalom , and introduces himself as Alexis Zorba, a Greek born in Romania. The narrator is fascinated by Zorba's lascivious opinions and expressive manner and decides to employ him as a foreman. On their way to Crete, they talk on a great number of subjects, and Zorba's soliloquies set the tone for a large part of the book. They are forced by circumstances to share a bathing-hut.
The narrator spends Sunday roaming the island, the landscape of which reminds him of "good prose, carefully ordered, sober… powerful and restrained" and reads Dante.
On returning to the hotel for dinner, the pair invite Madame Hortense to their table and get her to talk about her past as a courtesan. Zorba gives her the pet-name "Bouboulina" likely inspired by the Greek heroine while he takes the pet-name "Canavaro" after real-life Admiral Canevaro , a past lover claimed by Hortense.