The Coup describes violent events in the imaginary African nation of Kush, a large, landlocked, drought-ridden, sub-Saharan country led by Colonel Hakim. Aug 13, In his life, John Updike was considered to be one of, if not the, it: For The Coup is not just the only satire of post-colonial Africa that I’m aware. The Coup was a bestseller by John Updike about Africa that is almost totally forgotten today, even though it was written by America’s most gifted novelist at.

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I’ll assume that was a joke.

It’s not laziness, it’s routinization. Paradise News in a great little novel.

The Coup (Updike novel) – Wikipedia

I presume that Obama has at least started to read it. Paperbackpages. The subtle humor ever present, and Ellelou a lovable and believable madman of a dictator; at once larger than life and at the same time all too mundane and sane to be a true madman dictator. In reality it’s a sort of aestheticism, characterised by craving for something never really exixted, or exists in dreams.

In addition to peanuts are grown millet, sorghum, cotton, yams, dates, tobacco, and indigo. The fear and anger are palpable, and several passages nearly stand up and pop out of the page.

Grisly acts are carried out without a word spoken, from life to death as easily as a blink of an eye. Speaking of which, one of the blurbs on the back if my paperback of Black Mischief calls it a novel of “declining Britain and emerging Africa”. Updike found himself BOXED in by his writing, and instead of constructing an opening from which he could have written himself free, he was found repeatedly barricaded in a construction of words that enclosed him, closer and closer, with no escape that could be provided by word, topic, or story.

During the passing of Updike, I took and reread my favorite parts in the hilarious novel. And yet nothing alien or foul is introduced to explain the descent.


I most definitely struggled in places, but, who knows, your attention span could be better than mine. So Orwell’s work will be public domain in ; Waugh’s, There are few men so foolish. Eliot’s style in updikd is such that you get the idea pretty quickly if you’ll like it or not.

More from John Updike. So I guess then it wasn’t much of couo surprise to people when he divorced his wife? There is also a resemblance between Obama and the hero of Updike’s novel Terrorist. Seldom does writing give one so physical a pleasure as the lyrical passages in this book. Nothing is jihn precisely his fault.

Will have to revisit it. If the book can be said to have any one flaw, it is that it ends too optimistically…in a manner of speaking. Mar 17, Ed Vaughn rated it liked it.

The Coup by John Updike.

The Coup by John Updike

He had four wives, and left them all it was said unsatisfied, so consuming was his love for the arid land of Kush. In the vast north it is virtually immeasurable. However, as the book cleverly reveals, there are a few things that separate him from the standard dictator: A great historical novel that well describes the weakness and dysfunction of a multicultural society in this case, Singapore on the eve of the WW2 Japanese invasion.

True, but Austen doesn’t just help you understand women; it helps you understand human nature, as it manifests in civilized society. And as the titular Coup takes place, Ellelou manages to become something of a mythical hero to his countrymen, even as he manages to survive and his country goes completely off the rails he had planned for it to travel on.

It’s also not much discussed today, probably because its content is just too damn accurate. Tracking John Updike’s Foot Fetish. The only chapter s which are a little disheartening are the ones udpike which Ellel This is a brilliant piece, up there with “Toward the end of Time”.

Even the rivers in Kush are brown, but for the blue moment when the torrents of a rainstorm boil murderously down a wadi; and the sudden verdure of the rainy season soon dons a cloak of dust.


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The only thing of Updike’s I’ve read in decades was “The Witches of Eastwick,” which I thought was absolute dreck punctured now and again by a brilliant sentence. Eric Ambler, particularly his earlier and later books. From the Trade Paperback edition. I extracted a bravura chunk of Macaulay’s History of England a month ago. I think Updike would cut a wholly different figure if this book came to be widely read. I’m glad to see you suggested Watership Down. The capitalist antagonists seem cool and poised in contrast but they also look empty and ultimately pointless.

Anyway the son idealizes the absent father and resents the mother with whom he lives in the New Jersey suburbs of NYC, where he finds it impossible to fit in. In the Coup you just coip misogyny with some racism.

First published inThe Coup is as fresh today as it was then, the cautionary tale of an African dictator’s life and loves which moves joun between exquisite poetry and high farce. In yr heart of hearts you were James Dean. There were a few breaks in which he addresses the reader directly, more an attempt to apologize for his political haranguing–even though his research and overall knowledge of his subject material is outstandi Although I give this five stars, I do not consider this much more than tepid in the Updike temperature.

The Coup by John Updike

To ask other readers questions about The Coupplease sign up. Here in Hong Kong, the public library stocks seven copies citywide, with one tye at the little neighborhood branch down the street. Previous to French organization of the territory of Noire in checking a British thrust arising in the Sudanthe area on both sides of the river had been known, vaguely, as Wanjiji.