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Mr. Bridge (1969)

de Evan S. Connell

Altres autors: Mira la secció altres autors.

Sèrie: The Bridges (2)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaConverses / Mencions
5832133,348 (3.82)1 / 61
Walter Bridge is an ambitious lawyer who redoubles his efforts and time at the office whenever he sense that his family needs something, even when what they need is more of him and less of his money. Affluence, material assets, and comforts create a cocoon of community respectability that cloaks the void within--not the skeleton in the closet but a black hole swallowing the whole household. The Bridge novels have been recognized as classics during their author's lifetime. With their shared ability to capture the manners and mores of the American upper middle class, Connell has done for the late thirties what Sinclair Lewis did for the twenties.… (més)
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Es mostren 1-5 de 21 (següent | mostra-les totes)
listened to it on Audible after reading Mrs. Bridges. It was written about 10 years later and one can see (hear) the difference. a lot longer book, but still, very concise and direct. each chapter has a title.."The Glove, Avrum...This is Mr. Bridges view of his life. He feels his responsibility is to financially take care of the family, act correct, behave correct...He is very opinionated and dictatorial. He loves his wife and shows it by making sure she has enough money, a maid, a nice house and doesn't work. He does not understand that she has "nothing to do " all day. Very good book ( )
  evatkaplan | Dec 8, 2021 |
A joyless life rendered so plaintively and pathetically.

Mr Bridge could've just been another typical angry, miserable story of the mid-century, upper-middle class, white American man genre, as written by some of Connell's well-known contemporaries.

But somehow Connell imbues Mr Bridge with a hyper-realism - for example, instead of a blustery self-righteousness of a cartoon family man of the period, the contradictory self-righteousness that explains and summarises his entire personality, humanises him without excusing him - that makes this a frustratingly brilliant read.

Just as Mrs Bridge's pristine suitcase covers encapsulates her whole personality for me, Mr Bridge's showily understated Christmas "present" of stocks to the whole family+Harriet which he then takes back in the name of safekeeping just punched me through the page.

It has been ages since I've read Mrs Bridge, but I find Mr Bridge to be just as good a standalone novel. And seeing as I've forgotten most of the incidents that Mrs covered, I look forward to one day reading them both together as I'm sure there're some two-sided gems to uncover. ( )
  kitzyl | Oct 11, 2021 |
This is the companion novel to Mrs. Bridge, and is written in the same form with vignettes that provide a unique character study. As with Mrs, Bridge, it is set in Kansas City where Mr. Bridge is a successful attorney. The Bridges have two daughters and one son. Mrs. Bridge defers to her husband as the absolute authority in the home. Her role is to oversee the housekeeper and raise the children while he earns the living that keeps them all comfortable. He loves his family, but sometimes their needs are secondary to his career. He is a staunch, conservative Republican, and suspicious of anyone who does not share his value system. He is described as "the consummate Puritan" by someone, which seems accurate based on his inner thoughts and his actions. His older daughter challenges his beliefs by sharing her life in New York with "Negroes" and "homosexuals." He is rigid in his beliefs, pompous, elitist and unsentimental, which is probably standard in that era for someone from humble beginnings who succeeded financially. He also has rare moments of insight into his personality that show his humanity. I was particularly struck by the time when he succumbed to his son's persistent requests to play baseball on the street with the son and his friends. Knowing that he lacked athletic ability, he ventured out in front of the neighborhood where he embarrassed himself and his son with his lack of prowess in hitting the ball. There is very little plot in this book, but it is an engrossing look at life in the mid-nineteenth century and his perspective on life with Mrs. Bridge. ( )
  pdebolt | May 9, 2021 |
Publié dix ans après Mrs Bridge, l'auteur a souhaité utiliser le même matériau littéraire en se focalisant cette fois sur le "chef de famille".
Walter Bridge, marié à India avec laquelle il a trois enfants (Ruth, Carolyn et Douglas), est un avocat ambitieux, dévoré par son travail. Personnage austère, puritain, sec et pragmatique, il montre fort peu ses émotions et sentiments.
Devenue adulte et ayant souhaité fuir un cocon familial rigide et sans fantaisie, sa fille aîné Ruth déclarera à son père, à l'occasion d'une visite paternelle à New York, alors qu'ils se trouvent au Metropolitan Museum face au portrait d'un cardinal : "I bought a print of it. He reminds me so of you". On ne saurait dire mieux pour le décrire.
Grace Barron, amie d'India mais néanmoins libre penseuse (et qui donnera fin à ses jours) dira pourtant subtilement à Mr Bridge qu'elle croise au restaurant : "You're not as cold as you pretend to be". "I think your doors open in different places, that's all. Most people just don't know how to get in to you. They knock and they knock where the door is supposed to be, but it's a blank wall. But you're there. I've watched you. I've seen you do some awfully cold things warmly and some warm things coldly".
Walter Bridge est incapable de dire à sa femme qu'il l'aime alors qu'elle remplit son existence. Il la protège et la gâte comme une enfant, lui laissant peu de chances de grandir et de sortir de son petit univers familial. Ce n'est que tardivement qu'il l'emmène faire ce voyage à travers l'Europe qu'il lui avait promis lors de leur rencontre. Au retour, de passage à New York pour rendre visite à leur fille Ruth, il s'étonne et s'émeut de l'innocence de sa femme qui avale le papier d'un "fortune cookie" dans un restaurant chinois : "She was passing through life with a neutral and pleasant expression, utterly failing to recognize the world in which she lived: a desperate, harsh, remorseless world where everybody knew there was a piece of paper inside a Chinese fortune cookie". Mrs Bridge ne connaît pas les pièges et doubles fonds.
Ainsi, Mr Bridge règne en maître incontesté et incontestable au sein de sa famille. Consulté pour toutes questions dont Mrs Bridge sent qu'elle ne pourrait seule venir à bout, il tranche et rend la justice en éternel Salomon.
Il est le négatif de sa femme qui ne vit que par les autres et pour les autres. Lui demeure assez indifférent (ou s'efforce en tout cas de l'être) aux malheurs des autres. Ayant forgé son succès par la force de son travail et de sa volonté après une jeunesse rude, il a peu d'égards pour les "canards boiteux" qui ne récoltent que ce qu'ils méritent. Pur produit de son époque (rappelons que l'histoire se passe au Kansas dans les années 30), il est volontiers antisémite et méfiant vis-à-vis de la communauté noire.
Le livre, probablement un peu moins senti et subtil que le tome précédent consacré à Mrs Bridge (fait vraisemblablement dû à la description d'un personnage qui s'inscrit résolument dans la réflexion et beaucoup moins dans l'émotion) est un véritable plaisir de lecture. Son style acéré, net et pointilliste fait mouche. ( )
  biche1968 | Apr 2, 2021 |
Poor Mr. Bridge, he has built his life based on respectability and stability and forgotten to truly enjoy it. He sees danger everywhere and, while loving and protecting his family, seeks to control everything they experience. He can't succeed, of course, and when events threaten to intrude on the cocoon he has woven, he responds by becoming numb. Eventually he is so numb, he cannot conceive of what it would be like to fully live. ( )
  PatsyMurray | Aug 11, 2020 |
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Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Evan S. Connellautor primaritotes les edicionscalculat
Shriver, LionelIntroduccióautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat

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Walter Bridge is an ambitious lawyer who redoubles his efforts and time at the office whenever he sense that his family needs something, even when what they need is more of him and less of his money. Affluence, material assets, and comforts create a cocoon of community respectability that cloaks the void within--not the skeleton in the closet but a black hole swallowing the whole household. The Bridge novels have been recognized as classics during their author's lifetime. With their shared ability to capture the manners and mores of the American upper middle class, Connell has done for the late thirties what Sinclair Lewis did for the twenties.

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Mitjana: (3.82)
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