The Good Terrorist

The Good Terrorist A hugely significant political novel for the late twentieth century from one of the outstanding writers of the modern era In a London squat a band of bourgeois revolutionaries are united by a loathing

  • Title: The Good Terrorist
  • Author: Doris Lessing
  • ISBN: 9780586068809
  • Page: 268
  • Format: Paperback
  • The Good Terrorist

    A hugely significant political novel for the late twentieth century from one of the outstanding writers of the modern era In a London squat a band of bourgeois revolutionaries are united by a loathing of the waste and cruelty they see around them These maladjusted malcontents try desperately to become involved in terrorist activities far beyond their level of competence.A hugely significant political novel for the late twentieth century from one of the outstanding writers of the modern era In a London squat a band of bourgeois revolutionaries are united by a loathing of the waste and cruelty they see around them These maladjusted malcontents try desperately to become involved in terrorist activities far beyond their level of competence Only Alice seems capable of organising anything Motherly, practical and determined, she is also easily exploited by the group and ideal fodder for a dangerous and potent cause Eventually their naive radical fantasies turn into a chaos of real destruction, but the aftermath is not as exciting as they had hoped Nonetheless, while they may not have changed the world, their lives will never be the same again

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      268 Doris Lessing
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      Posted by:Doris Lessing
      Published :2019-03-12T10:04:01+00:00

    One thought on “The Good Terrorist

    1. Glenn Sumi

      My admiration for Nobel laureate Doris Lessing continues to grow with this novel about a naïve group of revolutionaries living in a squat in mid-1980s London. Lessing’s triumph is getting deep inside the complex mind of Alice Mellings, a spoilt, entitled and very clever upper-middle-class woman in her 30s who acts like the squat’s den mother and is filled with contradictions.Alice detests the striving, materialistic middle classes, and yet she enjoys – really thrives on – fixing up her [...]

    2. Manny

      I was thinking the other day about C.S. Lewis'sThe Last Battle, a book which I utterly loathe. As I said in my review, you can pardon the uninspired writing or the preachiness. What gets me angry is the subplot with Puzzle the donkey, who fronts the religious coup and, somehow, is whitewashed and receives eternal salvation. Apparently, because his unspeakably evil acts were performed in good faith, everything is fine. The surprising thing is that Lewis lived though WW II, and was writing not tha [...]

    3. Issa Deerbany

      عنوان الرواية يعبر عن شخصية بطلة الرواية أليس .والتي هي اقرب الى دور الام للمجموعة المشاغبة والذين يتخذون من الفكر الشيوعي منهجا لهم وذلك بنبذ المجتمع الذي يعيشون فيه والسكن في بيت مهجور. أليس تقوم بدور الراعية لهذا البيت وتقوم بتوفير النقود من اجل صيانة المنزل ليصبح صالحا ل [...]

    4. Deborah Markus

      After the Boston Marathon bombing, I had to reread this book. Everything I could say about it within that context -- that it shows the danger of "the cause" trumping morality; that terrorists are frightening not because they're monsters but because they aren't -- sounds trite and obvious. So I won't focus on those points, other than to say that yes, Doris Lessing does them full justice without being the least bit hamhanded.Many of the reviews of this book have mentioned how difficult it is to e [...]

    5. Aubrey

      There are a lot of defenders of the notion that satire doesn't actually have to obviously criticize whatever odious mechanisms are incorporated into its workings in order to call itself such. Those people can stay in their paradisaical lah-dee-dah-I-Live-In-A-Vacuum-Land and far far away from me. If I wanted to engage with normalizing of Everything Fucked Up In The World instead of deconstructing the lot entirely, I'd go nearly everywhere else other than the world of satire. True, not all is wri [...]

    6. Jennifer (aka EM)

      It's been about 2 weeks now since I've finished The Good Terrorist, and so I'm in that place where I feel most compelled but least capable of writing a review. Since that's never stopped me before, here goes.I must applaud Lessing for her skill at creating characters, Alice in particular, who are utterly annoying, petulant, stupid, dangerously immature, and appallingly destructive. These characters wrap their fundamental laziness and selfishness in a cloak of ignorant, misguided, sociopathologic [...]

    7. Ahmed

      أنا بحب النوعية دي من الكتابات , النوعية النسوية المبهرة , اللي بتكتب عن النساء كقضية حق لابد من الانحياز لها , بلا أي تطرف أو عنصرية أو حتى نظرة دونية , الكتابات النسوية الهادفة التي تتعمق في فهم هذا الكائن المعقد الجميل , وتجعلنا نرى ذلك الكائن بكل وضوح بجماله وبريقه الأخاّذ , [...]

    8. Alexandra

      Meh! und Wäh!Was hat die Kritikerin der WELT über dieses Buch geschrieben? "Die gute Terroristin ist eine dramatische und literarisch aufregende Mischung aus Thriller, Gesellschaftsroman, Zeitgemälde und einem glühenden Plädoyer, dem Terror endlich eine endgültige Absage zu erteilen."Meine Meinung: Ein sprödes langweiliges nichtssagendes Werk in dem gehirntote gelangweilte Kinder der Oberschicht mit einem ausreichenden sozialen Netz a bissi rebellieren, Kommunismus und Arbeiterklasse spie [...]

    9. Jayyan Al-Bailasan

      "آليس" فتاة تجاوزت منتصف الثلاثينات ، ذات هشاشةٍ تدفعها لإرضاء الجميع و إطعامهم و إراحتِهم ، تقوم بإحياء بيتٍ مهجور مع عامل هشٍّ أيضًا ، تدفعه هشاشته - في نهاية الأمر - إلى إلقاء نفسه أمام سيارة ، و تدفعتها هشاشتها لتوافق - دون اقتناع حقيقي - على أعمال المجموعة التفجيرية في وضح [...]

    10. David

      The story moves very slowly, and things really only start to happen in the final act, yet I was never bored by this book. Doris Lessing's writing is like one of the finer social satirists of the 19th or early 20th century, writing about contemporary events, or at least contemporary for the 1980s, when this book was written. The Good Terrorist is about Alice Mellings, who is, with great and lasting irony, exactly the sort of comfy-making, boo-boo kissing motherly type as her own mother was, even [...]

    11. بثينة الإبراهيم

      تقول دوريس ليسنج إنها استلهمت القصة من جارة لها كانت تسكن بيتًا مهجورًا وحين وقعت تفجيرات في بعض المحلات في لندن، بدا لها أن هذه الجارة قد تكون متورطة فيها. تصور ليسنج بكثير من الرتابة لندن في الثمانينيات من القرن العشرين، عبر وصفها لمجموعة من الشباب يسمون أنفسهم "شيوعيين" وي [...]

    12. Neal Adolph

      It was around March 5th that I discovered it was Women's History Month. I was reading a book back then - a leftover of Black History Month - that I wasn't much enjoying. I quickly set it aside. There is a lot of literature I want to read that is written by women. But I could tell that no fiction was going to lift me out of whatever reading malaise it was that I acquired after finishing James Baldwin's lovely "Go Tell It On The Mountain". I picked up Naomi Klein's latest book and read two hundred [...]

    13. Abeer Saleh

      تنضم "آليس" لمجموعة من الشباب "الثائر" الغير ناضج, والذي لا هم له سوى الرفض والتمرد على أي شيء ولأي شيء, تجاهد "أليس" لجعل المنزل رقم 43 مكانًا لائقًا تعيش فيه تلك المجموعة المخربة, وتدرك متأخرة أن العديد ممن شاركها ذلك المنزل لم يمارس سوى الاستغلال لمن حوله, ولها هي بشكل خاص.ما قر [...]

    14. Rob

      As a lefty and former squatter this book contains dozens of painful home truths familiar to all of us involved in radical politics. The tiny left group removed from reality. The bragging about violence on protests. The lazy 'vanguard thinkers' who let everyone else do the work. All are present and correct in Lessing's unforgiving assault on a hapless bunch of middle class revolutionaries drifting from squat to squat in an attempt to escape from the real world. Alice, intelligent but consumed by [...]

    15. Lubna Ah

      الإرهابية الطيبة / دوريس ليسنغ نشرت عام 1985 تدور أحداثها في ضواحي لندن ، تتضمن أحداث ثمانينات القرن العشرين من تفجيرات و أعمال تخريبية في بعض المحلات و الشوارع في لندن و نُسبت هذه الأحداث إلى مجموعة من الهواة و المشاغبين ، هذه الرواية تعالج بيئة هؤلاء الهواة ، و ما ترمي إليه ح [...]

    16. Ghaida.

      هذا الكتاب بائس فعلًا .يتحدث عن مجموعة احداث يومية لمجموعة ثوّار (هواة بالطبع) من وجهة نظر أليس ولا بأس في ذلك لكن الترجمة قتلت اسلوب دوريس ليسنج جدًا ! اسلوب باهت .الشيء الوحيد الجيد فيه كان قدرة أليس على توقع الشخصيات بدقة والباقي مضجر .اعتذر لكن سحر توفيق لم تكن موفقة في التر [...]

    17. Naomi Foyle

      I found the staccato, pile-up syntax grating at first, but by the end of the book I was engrossed. That restless, angular, off-putting voice, I soon realised, not only conveys the world, ‘raw and dismal’, through Alice’s eyes, but also Alice and her world through Lessing’s. A Communist who hasn’t read Marx, a hostile daughter who steals from her own family, yet also a driven homemaker and fearless opponent of bureaucratic injustice, Alice’s triumphant judgements of others are simulta [...]

    18. Cwinters02

      I hated this damn book. I was forced to read it for class, and now I have to write a fucking 10-page paper on it by Wednesday. Every page was torturous to read. Nothing happened until the very end, and even that sucked. I recommend that you never read this book. There was not one character or plot line worth investing a second of your life on. Thanks for listening.

    19. Sarah

      16/5 - I'm a bit scared to start this because it looks deep and complicated and I'm worried I won't understand it. The plot sounds interesting, but the language could be difficult. A bit like what happened with Blood Meridian. Okay, here I go To be continued18/5 - I'm not a fan of well and truly adult women (she's 36!) behaving like innocent 17-year-olds. For the last 39 pages Alice has behaved like a fool; begging for handouts from her parents (50 pounds), verbally and nearly physically abused [...]

    20. Mohsen Rajabi

      اوایل کار، سخت بود خواندن این کتاب برای من. یعنی خیلی کند بود و شخصیت‌ها همه روی اعصاب بودند. سردرگمی عجیبی هست و شخصیت آلیس هم که درست از آن آدم‌هایی هستند که با طرز تفکر و اعمال‌شان حرص من را درمی‌آورند. البته ماجرا رفته‌رفته جالب‌تر شد و به نظرم پایان‌بندی خوبی داشت.فکر م [...]

    21. Candle

      قرأتها وأنا انتظر حدوث شيء يُغَيِّر وجهة نظري بها ولكن هذا مالم يحدث الرواية مُملة النجمتين هنا للبيت " بطل الرواية الفعلي " فقط .#أبجدية_فرح #إنستقرام .

    22. Angela

      The Observer wrote about this book that: 'Doris Lessing writes about the parts that other novelists cannot reach', and I would have to agree. Her characterisation is so in-depth and subtle, and written in such plain language that you almost have a deep therapist-like knowledge of the main character. I found myself constantly analysing the characters in order to determine what would happen (or rather what they would allow to happen) next.Unfortunately for me a group of spoiled, middle class commu [...]

    23. Jennifer

      Book Club pick for April. 80's London--what a different place! Frustrating book, the main character is so annoyingly misguided and she makes us worry about all sorts of things that aren't her problem. She is stressing me out! It doesn't really get any better. At the end it is revealed that what's her name (pretty bad when I can't remember the main character's name one week after I finish the book) is basically nuts, but what about all the other characters? She doesn't seem much more insane than [...]

    24. Eleni

      The Good Terrorist is Alice Mellings, a mid-thirties London radical who puts her heart and soul into restoring a derelict home as the base for her group, part of the Communist Centre Union, a small political party of activists in the middle of Thatcherism in Britain, who aspire to join the IRA (or even the Soviets). Alice blazes with energy and bursts with conflicts. She passionately declares she HATES the middle-class that serves the “shitty fucking filthy lying cruel hypocritical system”, [...]

    25. شريف ثابت

      رغم الفارق الواسع بين تجربة شهلا أو وردة المناضلة الاشتراكية اليمنية فى الجهاد الثورى ضد الامبريالية الانجليزية وعملاءها المحليين فى صحراء ظفار خلال الستينات الماضية فى رواية وردة لـ صنع الله إبراهيم، وتجربة الانجليزيّة أليس ميلينجز ومجموعتها من الثوريين الاشتراكيين اله [...]

    26. Ahmed Diaa

      لأول مرة منذ فترة طويلة حقاً أستمتع بعمل أدبي لكاتبة امرأة. يكتب قليل جداً من الكاتبات النساء في الوطن العربي أدباً قيماً، على كثرتهن. في الإرهابية الطيبة أجادت دوريس ليسنج التعبير عن شخصيات العمل نفسياً، وخاصة أليس ميلينجز التي تقدم الدعم الوجداني واللوجيستي لهذه المجموعة [...]

    27. Katie

      I read this whole thing on a plane from Helsinki to New YorkE STYLE. I don't think I've ever read a book that does quite what this one does with style. Alice Mellings is appreciably manic in a way that's absolutely intentional, and yet that is and isn't what the book is about. As she flits through life and the events of her days, making them both more and less significant than they should be, but never at the right times, you become exhausted when she's tired and energized when she's energized. [...]

    28. Steven Gonzales

      Dorris Lessing’s novel is a brilliant representation of the fallacy of the mixing of the ideals of communism/socialism and the unfortunate faultiness of human nature. Although the actual story of a group of revolutionaries living in a squat, fixing up a house and attempting to get into contact with various higher-up communist groups doesn’t exactly peak interest, the message behind the novel suffices in entertaining its audience. Furthermore, the characters portrayed throughout the story are [...]

    29. Stephanie

      My mother and I have resolved to read prize-winners. Note all of the ambiguities and catch-savers in that sentence. We did not resolve to only read prize-winners, nor did we specify what prizes fell into our category, nor did we specify whether we meant any book from the oeuvre of prize-winning authors or particularly a single prize-winning book. (See, e.g my very first review on this site, in which I granted only one star to a Golden Dagger Award winner (detective novels get prizes too!)). In t [...]

    30. Lauren Martin

      The Good Terrorist by Doris Lessing is a very unique book. Personally I do not know much about the IRA or the other groups Lessing mentioned. I did not know what to expect when I picked up this book for the first time. After I began reading it I could not put it down. It was a quick, easy read that was very interesting. I actually enjoyed reading this novel despite the emotional exhaustion. The entire novel was a rollercoaster of emotions.The cause of the emotional part of this novel was Alice a [...]

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