THE BALLOON Source for information on The Balloon by Donald Barthelme, Reference Guide to Short Fiction dictionary. Complete summary of Donald Barthelme’s The Balloon. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of The Balloon. Dive deep into Donald Barthelme’s The Balloon with extended analysis, commentary, and discussion.

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The balloon is meaningful to him alone and not to his lover or even to Barthelme.

The Balloon by Donald Barthelme, |

Short Stories 1 O. About Me Charles May. What is the Balloon, why is it here? Return to Book Page.

This was a gentle and almost convincing glimpse into another person’s opinion. Thus, my write-up here although I included The Balloon as part of a collection of stories I reviewed previously. And, also, can be located via a Google search. Readers schooled in the realistic tradition of the nineteenth-century novel found Donald Barthelme tough reading indeed. No trivia or quizzes yet. Consequently, some of Barthelme’s pieces insist that the reader have a background knowledge of contemporary philosophic thought albeit philosophic thought that has become cheapened by public chatwhile others are based on popular culture.

Reading Alice Munro’s “What is Remembered”. The basic fictional issue overshadowing the work of Donald Barthelme is this: How would I react if it was to happen to me?

Dan Schan rated it did not like it Oct 03, Henry Award Part 2 1 O.

Reading the Short Story: Donald Barthelme, “The Balloon”– Short Story Month —Day 24

He served briefly as the editor of an Army newspaper before returning to the U. It was agreed that since the meaning of the balloon could never be known absolutely, extended discussion was pointless, or at least less purposeful than the activities of those who, for example, hung green and blue paper lanterns from the warm gray underside, in certain streets, or seized the occasion to write messages on the surface, announcing their availability for the performance of bartuelme acts, or the availability of acquaintances.


Henry Award Stories 1 O. The underlying assumption is that the forms of art are explainable by the laws of art; literary language is not a proxy for something else, but rather an object of study itself.

It is the extreme means by which Barthelme attempts to reach this truth that makes his fiction so difficult. Barthelme is not really interested in the thhe lives of his characters; in fact, few seem to have personal lives. To doald only about this process, however, is to donalx the risk of dealing with language on a level that leaves the reader gasping for something tangible and real, even if that reality is only an illusion. The entire collection deals with a number of specific subjects, including the relationship between war and mechanized society; the search for meaning in politics, art, science, and personal relationships; the privacy of love; and the failure of language.

I found this adorable, although I do get frustrated when people have conceptions of art that are different to mine, and this is one of those times.

The participant—the reader, like the lover-narrator—becomes the ultimate artist or creator, and depending upon his or her system, grid, or frame of reference, constructs, or barthelm, or rejects, or simply plays with whatever responses the balloon elicits.

I love the delicacy and lyricism of The Balloona story with such a special beauty it deserves a review on its own. What does it mean and what is its purpose?

The Balloon

The story is simple, yet brings the mind across all manners of thinking and wondering. Also I ju A cute little whimsical short story about authorial intention, and the purpose and meaning of art. Finally “it was suggested” that the virtue of the balloon, given all these intersections, was its “randomness.


Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list. As a giant balloon comes to exist in a city numerous people have different interactions with this mystical balloon, all of which reflect different attitudes to art.

Barthelme’s relationship with his father was a struggle between a rebellious son and a demanding father.

Collage, says Barthelme, is the central principle of all art in the twentieth century. Critics complained that Barthelme’s work was without subject matter, without character, without plot, and without concern for the reader’s understanding. Marion and Donald remained wed until his death from throat cancer. To ask other readers questions barhtelme The Balloonplease sign up. All, barthelmme, “interpret” it according to their own frames of reference, and Barthelme has a heyday tracing the gamut of responses.

For seven or so pages the speaker describes the balloon and the numerous reactions to it. Alice Herondale rated it liked it Feb 06, Brady Quarles rated it it was ok Sep 24, When I was teaching the short story, I prepared for each class thoroughly, taking more notes than necessary to help me remember the most im Donald Barthelme’s brothers Frederick – and Steven are also respected fiction writers and teachers at The University of Southern Mississippi.

He married four times. Barthelme’s attitude toward his father is delineated in the novels The Dead Father and The King as he is pictured in the characters King Arthur and Lancelot.

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