352 pages, 7.98 × 5.32 × 0.92 in
October 15, 1999
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 0156007754
ISBN - 13: 9780156007757
About the Book
Portuguese Nobel Laureate Saramago tells a fantastic tale about a city hit by an epidemic of "white blindness," in this work that is the basis for the upcoming movie with Julianne Moore.
Read from the Book
The amber light came on. Two of the cars ahead accelerated before the red light appeared. At the pedestrian crossing the sign of a green man lit up. The people who were waiting began to cross the road, stepping on the white stripes painted on the black surface of the asphalt, there is nothing less like a zebra, however, that is what it is called. The motorists kept an impatient foot on the clutch, leaving their cars at the ready, advancing, retreating like nervous horses that can sense the whiplash about to be inflicted. The pedestrians have just finished crossing but the sign allowing the cars to go will be delayed for some seconds, some people maintain that this delay, while apparently so insignificant, has only to be multiplied by the thousands of traffic lights that exist in the city and by the successive changes of their three colours to produce one of the most serious causes of traffic jams or bottlenecks, to use the more current term. The green light came on at last, the cars moved off briskly, but then it became clear that not all of them were equally quick off the mark. The car at the head of the middle lane has stopped, there must be some mechanical fault, a loose accelerator pedal, a gear lever that has stuck, problem with the suspension, jammed brakes, breakdown in the electric circuit, unless he has simply run out of gas, it would not be the first time such a thing has happened. The next group of pedestrians to gather at the crossing see the driver of the station
From the Publisher
A city is hit by an epidemic of white blindness" which spares no one. Authorities confine the blind to an empty mental hospital, but there the criminal element holds everyone captive, stealing food rations and raping women. There is one eyewitness to this nightmare who guides seven strangers-among them a boy with no mother, a girl with dark glasses, a dog of tears-through the barren streets, and the procession becomes as uncanny as the surroundings are harrowing. A magnificent parableof loss and disorientation and a vivid evocation of the horrors of the twentieth century, Blindness has swept the reading public with its powerful portrayal of man's worst appetites and weaknesses-and man's ultimately exhilarating spirit. The stunningly powerful novel of man's will to survive against all odds, by the winner of the 1998 Nobel Prize for Literature.
About the Author
JOSE SARAMAGO (1922-2010) was the author of many novels, among them Blindness, All the Names, Baltasar and Blimunda, and The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis. In 1998 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.
From Our Editors
An epidemic of "white blindness" hits up the metropolis, sparing few whilst indiscriminately attacking the populous. Panic-maddened, citizens take to shelter only to be knocked around by seedier types that are themselves preoccupied with staying safe. From the ruins sways a procession of seven strangers, each totally unique in their background. Together they wade through the aftermath of the city to witness firsthand the harrowing surroundings. Blindness won the Nobel Prize for Literature for its powerful portrayal of man's worst appetites and weaknesses, and the exhilarating spirit that rises beyond them.
PRAISE FOR BLINDNESS "This is a shattering work by a literary master."-The Boston Globe
"This is an important book, one that is unafraid to face all of the horrors of the century."-The Washington Post