Seeing is the second book from Jose Saramago I read after Blindness. I read Blindness years ago and admired the author. More than admiration, his effect on me became an experience I cannot forget; it gave me great pleasure, although it scared me. Have you ever felt like this about a book? I didn’t dare read Seeing after Blindness. I always wanted to remember Saramago with Blindness, but I couldn’t resist. And thank God, I couldn’t. Seeing is one of the books that Saramago’s genius shines brightly.
Seeing was the only book I took with me on my Lisbon trip; I wanted to read Saramago in his hometown. As I realized that it was a book that would grow like an avalanche from its first pages, I continued to read it cautiously. Think about it; there’s an election in a city that just got out of blindness incident four years ago. When the count is over, 70% of the votes are empty. Of course, the authorities immediately declare a state of emergency. Although they prepare everything to drag people into chaos, nothing happens. So they take control when chaos does not emerge, and they start to do whatever it takes to create turmoil. Saramago’s genius winks to the reader on every page. Unfortunately, the familiarity of it all and, this world order also immerses the reader in black waters.
It may take some time to get used to Saramago’s style, but please don’t give up. You will love it, and you will be inspired. Enjoy!
About the book: Seeing
Despite the heavy rain, the officer at Polling Station 14 finds it odd that by midday on National Election day, only a handful of voters have turned out. Puzzlement swiftly escalates to shock when the final count reveals seventy per cent of the votes are blank. National law decrees the election should be repeated but the result is even worse. The authorities, seized with panic, decamp from the capital and declare a state of emergency. When apathy and disillusionment renders an entire democratic system useless what happens next?
About the author: Jose saramago
José de Sousa Saramago, GColSE, was a Portuguese writer and recipient of the 1998 Nobel Prize in Literature. His works, some of which can be seen as allegories, commonly present subversive perspectives on historic events, emphasizing the theopoetic human factor.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: