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The Politics of Washing: Real Life in Venice (Anglais) Broché – 29 mars 2013

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

'More cerebral than most Venetian travelogues or fictions....Coles clearly has ample knowledge but also the wit to have travelled light' --The Spectator

'Eloquent' --The New York Times

'A riveting account of ordinary life in an extraordinary place, packed with charming anecdotes that will have readers hooked on Venetian life.' --Woodbine Independent

Présentation de l'éditeur

This is the story of ordinary life in an extraordinary place. The beautiful city of Venice has been a fantasy land for people from around the globe for centuries, but what is it like to live there? To move house by boat, to get a child with a broken leg to hospital or set off for school one morning only to find that the streets have become rivers and the playground is a lake full of sewage? When Polly Coles and her family left England for Venice, they discovered a city caught between modern and ancient life - where the locals still go on an annual pilgrimage to give thanks for the end of the Black Deathl; where schools are housed in renaissance palaces and your new washing machine can only be delivered on foot. This is a city perilously under siege from tourism, but its people refuse to give it up - indeed, they love it with a passion. The Politics of Washing is a fascinating window into the world of ordinary Venetians and the strange and unique place they call home.

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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 21 commentaires
8 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Warts and Roses 23 juin 2013
Par takingadayoff - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Imagine what it's like to live in Venice. You probably already have imagined. Even allowing for the reality of occasional flooding and constant tourist crowds, it still seems like a magnificently romantic place to live.

Your dream of living in Venice most likely doesn't include four children ages 12 and under, but Polly Coles, a Londoner, and her Italian husband don't let their large family keep them from taking the plunge and they all move to Venice for a year. It makes for a change from the typical retire-to-a-villa-in-France-or-Italy memoir.

The book seems unstructured, although it's set up as a chronological narrative of a year in Venice. It's more a collection of observations and vignettes of their life in a city that is both eternal and endangered. Coles describes the complicated logistics of having a new washing machine delivered and the old one taken away in a town without streets or cars or elevators. In true British fashion, she doesn't let the threat of rain (or even actual rain) stop her from holding a children's birthday party in the campo. She goes to parent-teacher conferences and grapples with "tu' and 'lei', the familiar and polite forms of 'you'.

And, in true Venetian form, Coles participates in the most popular local sport, complaining about tourists.

There's just as much complaining and snark about inconsiderate neighbors as about there is about clueless tourists, and Coles often stops to appreciate the beauty and unique atmosphere of her adopted town. You get the full picture, the Venetian warts as well as roses.
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
As I knew it would be 22 juillet 2013
Par Judith Abraham - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I have travelled to Venice a number of times, and have often wished
I could live there. Polly Coles has written of my own brief experiences,
and added so many more that involve her children and daily life. This
really is Venice, as I knew it would be...
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
The other side of Venice... 5 juin 2014
Par THE TEACH - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle
I enjoyed how well written this memoir is...couldn't put it down, actually. If you've been to Venice and imagined yourself living there, wondering what it would really be like, this is one way to glimpse the possibility. If you are a lover of Donna Leon' s Brunetti books, as am I, this gives you an in depth look at the allusions made there about life in Venice...the tourists that the locals despise but which now sustain the city ...the gypsies, the beggars, the Africans selling fake merchandise, the struggles of everyday life in a city without cars, super markets and all the other things we think we can't live without. And how the Venetians always know you're not one of them no matter that it's December and the city is nearly devoid of tourists, no matter how hard you try and wish you were. An excellent read if you love Venice...and how can anyone not?
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
I loved this book 16 août 2014
Par Robert E. Montgomery, Jr - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I loved this book. Although I have traveled to Venice many times, and consider it a magical place, I will appreciate it even more on my next visit because of the unique insights into the customs and viewpoints of native Venetians provided by Ms Coles. Her thoughtful insights and discoveries are of a kind seldom found in even the best "travel books", whose authors are almost always viewing a culture as observers, rather than day-to-day participants. The experiences that Ms Coles relates, as she struggled with game determination to expose her four young children to their Italian heritage are always interesting and often hilarious. Her vivid portrait of a Dickensian school officialdom is by itself sufficient reward for reading this book.
2 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
I am so disappointed with this book 8 juin 2015
Par Laverne S. - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I am so disappointed with this book. I have read many books about people moving all over Europe from Spain to Italy to France to Norway to Morocco, etc. I have enjoyed each of them as they learn a new culture, language and a different way of life. They were all born and raised somewhere else but love to travel, are adventurous and want a new experience. Sometimes those places are well known and a place that we have all heard about and want to see for ourselves. This is called traveling and we are called tourists. Polly Coles lived in England and decided to relocate her family to Venice for one year. It started off liked I hoped and was interesting. But about a quarter way into the book she started bashing the tourists for inconveniencing the Venicians who live in the city. As my reading progressed, the bashing got worse. This is from a writer who herself is not a Venetian. Tourists happen in great places. What about San Francisco, New York, Rome, Paris, Lisbon? Really? Instead of just giving us a great view of her 12 months in Venice, she basically whines about we should all stay away but yet its ok for her to visit. Geez. I gave this writer all the way to page 133 until she thoroughly annoyed me with her attitude towards tourists. Total bummer.
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