By Bernice Rubens Published by Eyre & Spottiswoode Norman is the clever one of a close-knit Jewish family in the East End of London. Infant prodigy; brilliant. Despite the often grim subject matter of her books, Bernice Rubens wrote Her best-known novel, The Elected Member, explored loneliness. The Elected Member is a Booker Prize-winning novel by Welsh writer Bernice Rubens. Plot[edit]. The novel’s main character is Norman Zweck, who is addicted .

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Looking back at the Booker: Bernice Rubens

In this novel, the person elected to that office is the brilliant son of the family, Norman Zweck. Years later she would return to the theme in Go Tell the Lemmingin which a woman is invited by her ex-husband to make a film about marital breakdown. The book explored the controversial theories of the psychologist R D Laing who argued that behind every disturbed person there is a “disturbing” familythrough the central character Norman Zweck, a gifted only son who suffers a mental breakdown under the pressure of family expectations and is committed to an asylum.

Explorations of the effects of Zweck’s condition on his immediate family are equally unsettling. Proud and mercurial Dutch football star who developed a fast-moving and fluid style of play. Jan 05, Joe rated it really liked it Shelves: It was interesting to know about the significance and use of diary entries in the world of writing.

The Elected Member | The Man Booker Prizes

How will the looming disaster affect those fragile lives caught up in the invasion? Return to Book Page.


This tragicomic novel follows the Zweck family as they deal with loss, not death per say although there is that toobut the loss of dreams, ambitions and hope. Two English students, Ellie and James, set off to hitch-hike across Europe with no particular aim in mind but a continent, and themselves, to discover.

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Looking back at the Booker: Bernice Rubens | Books | The Guardian

She has a large compassion, and an intelligence which makes her compulsively readable. Book Club Discussion Publisher’s description: The family patriarch Rabbi Zweck immigrates to London, settles in the Jewish neighborhood and has three children.

Only Bella, the unmarried sister, still in her childhood white ankle socks, can reach across the abyss of pain to bring father and son the elusive peace which they both desperately crave. Decades later, Tom, now a wlected screenwriter, encounters Paul by chance in LA, still grappling with the questions raised by this gorgeous and incisive novel: The family gave shelter to many Jews who had escaped from Austria and Germany in the months before the Second World War and both parents were staunch Zionists.

Between novels, Bernice Rubens wrote and directed documentary films, including a series on Indonesia for the UN and an acclaimed Man Alive documentary about the plight of parents of the mentally handicapped; she also worked abroad occasionally as a E,ected Council representative.

He spends his days in his parents’ old bedroom, locked away from his father and younger sister, popping amphetamine This Booker Prize winning novel about a close-knit but dysfunctional Jewish family is set in the East End of London in the s. Jun 28, Val rated it bernicf liked it Shelves: Only Bella, the unmarried sister, still in her childhood white ankle socks, can reach across the abyss of pain to bring father and son the bernlce peace which they both desperately crave.


Bbernice who was a big influence on the author, this is a must read.

Book: The Elected Member

Micro-Resilience by Bonnie St. Past actions, indiscretions, and tragic decisions haunt each of them, but none more than Norman. Then Don’t worry — your e-mail address is totally secure. However, in spite of these elements, the story remains a gripping and easy read. The reader is taken through the depressing and exasperating experience of a Drug addict and his close family members.

For Norman, his committal to a mental hospital represents the ultimate act of betrayal. Nov 21, Orla Hegarty rated it really liked it Shelves: This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. Norman is the clever one of a close-knit Jewish family in the East End of London. Rubens deftly uses her humor to lay bare the sadness of this life, made sadder because Norman could not see it himself.

Close Help Do you have a picture to add? This is a wonderfully in depth, tragicomedy character study of the devastating consequences of eleted overbearing mother, the insularly isolation of the immigrant experience, and a stunning indictment of the horrors of amphetamine abuse.

Each is keeping a secret; each has been shaken by the horrors of war.

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