Born in Wloszczowa in the Kielce region in 1949, he is a novelist and short-story writer, screenwriter and translator.
He first worked as a reporter for student newspapers, which surely explains his tape-recorder-like memory and talent for reproducing the speech of the man and woman in the street, the collective "voice of society". Paying attention to this voice allows Anderman to diagnose public moods and ways of thinking. This was the subject of his first novel, Chinese Whispers, and his far superior, often merciless portrayal of the introduction of Martial Law in Poland, A Country of the World, which provided a voice to a crowd of pathological castoffs who were disoriented, stupefied by propaganda and deprived of any authority they could look up to. Anderman's grotesque humor knocked the stuffing out of official slogans and programs by showing how they were reflected in the dreams and words of ordinary people. Anderman also tells of the fate of his generation, and his own fate, at a time of political transformation. His hero, a double for the author, is internally divided because of his obsessive sense of being followed by the secret police as he wanders in search of a place to live (Playing for Time), sums up his life in an internment center (No Air), and finally lays mercilessly bare the theatricality and unauthentic behavior of his fellow members of the political opposition (Edge of the World, Prison Sickness). A cult writer and participant in underground literary life in the twilight of communism, Anderman does not seem to be a great believer in Poland's chances for an internal transformation of society after the recovery of independence. The sickness of the spirit inherited from totalitarianism turns out to be difficult to uproot; Anderman has few rivals in discerning its symptoms among today's Poles.
"The sun was shining and the light struck two angels sleeping on a bench and one of them wanted to cover his eyes so he shifted his weight carelessly and fell through a hole in the bench straight onto the concrete sidewalk without spilling a drop from his bottle and the shadow of the bench slat cut his face in two from his chin to his forehead and that face still looked meditative as the angel lay on the sidewalk while the other one, asleep on the bench, suddenly stretched out his hand and began maniacally stroking the slat next to him where his companion had been lying until a moment ago and then the hand stopped moving and he smacked his lips..."("Edge of the World")
Source: www.polska2000.pl; copyright: Stowarzyszenie Willa Decjusza
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