Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Goldberg: Variations review

My review of Gabriel Josipovici's novel Goldberg: Variations is in the new edition of The Quarterly Conversation. The issue contains several items of interest, including Garth Risk Hallberg's argument against James Wood's repeated attacks on DeLillo's Underworld; Antoine Wilson on Tom McCarthy's Remainder; and Matthew Cheney on Rick Moody's Right Livelihoods.


Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Crary,

Thank you for drawing my attention to Josipovici. His paragraph on Leverk├╝hn convinced me to order “On Trust.” Perhaps we can discuss that book, or some other, in the near future.

You write: "Immediately the reader thinks of Bach, whose Goldberg Variations were, as legend has it, composed to help cure the insomnia of a rich patron named Goldberg." I believe the variations were written and nicknamed for Count Hermann Carl von Keyserlingk’s court harpsichordist Johann Gottlieb Theophilus Goldberg, a former pupil of Bach’s eldest son, Wilhelm Friedemann. The legend as I know it is that Keyserlingk, when suffering from insomnia, asked Goldberg to play the variations.

To thank you for recommending Josipovici, I will send a CD (Rosalyn Tureck, Christiane Jaccottet, or Glenn Gould's 1955 or 1981 recording) if you provide a P. O. box address.

J. D. Daniels

Richard said...

J.D. -

I'm pleased to have been able to introduce you to Josipovici--I've become a big admirer--and that you ordered On Trust!

And, of course you're right about the legend about the Variations. I bungled that somehow and never noticed it through several iterations. Sigh. Thanks for pointing it out.

I appreciate the offer of a recording (the only one I have of the ones you mention is the 1955 Gould), though I don't have a P.O. Box. I could give you my house address if you pop me an email at yolacrary@toad.net

Anyway, thanks for the comment.