ELIZABETH BOWEN MYSTERIOUS KOR PDF

These notes were contributed by members of the GradeSaver community. On a moonlit night during World War II, Arthur , a soldier on leave, and Pepita , his headstrong girlfriend, roam the streets of London arm-in-arm in search of a quiet place. Even though Pepita has talked to Callie about going out, her roommate did not understand the hint that she should give the two lovers some privacy. On the contrary, Callie has spent her evening preparing dinner and tidying up the flat because she has been looking forward to meeting Arthur. However, late at night she finally decides to go to bed, as she does not want to wait for Arthur and Pepita any longer.

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Full moonlight drenched the city and searched it; there was not a niche left to stand in. It was late, but not yet midnight; now the buses had stopped the polished roads and streets in this region sent for minutes together a ghostly unbroken reflection up. The soaring new flats and the crouching old shops and houses looked equally brittle under the moon, which blazed in windows that looked its way.

The futility of the black-out became laughable: from the sky, presumably, you could see every slate in the roofs, every whited kerb, every contour of the naked winter flowerbeds in the park; and the lake, with its shining twists and tree-darkened islands would be a landmark for miles, yes, miles, overhead. On this particular night during the Blitz in London, Arthur, a soldier home on leave is roaming around with his girlfriend, Pepita with no place they could go to where they can be alone.

Pepita lives in a tiny apartment with Callie, and the tactless Callie who never had a boyfriend intends to play hostess without realizing the couple is yearning for privacy. So Pepita describes the dreamlike, deserted city of Kor from a poem, a place Pepita likes to escape to when the reality of the war and over-crowded London become unbearable to her, to Arthur. However, to fully understand the symbolism and its implications for the interpretation of the plot, I had to rely on the internet, and I realized they can be interpreted in many different ways, so it made the story too complicated for my taste!

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London Stories: Mysterious Kôr by Elizabeth Bowen

Full moonlight drenched the city and searched it; there was not a niche left to stand in. It was late, but not yet midnight; now the buses had stopped the polished roads and streets in this region sent for minutes together a ghostly unbroken reflection up. The soaring new flats and the crouching old shops and houses looked equally brittle under the moon, which blazed in windows that looked its way. The futility of the black-out became laughable: from the sky, presumably, you could see every slate in the roofs, every whited kerb, every contour of the naked winter flowerbeds in the park; and the lake, with its shining twists and tree-darkened islands would be a landmark for miles, yes, miles, overhead. On this particular night during the Blitz in London, Arthur, a soldier home on leave is roaming around with his girlfriend, Pepita with no place they could go to where they can be alone. Pepita lives in a tiny apartment with Callie, and the tactless Callie who never had a boyfriend intends to play hostess without realizing the couple is yearning for privacy. So Pepita describes the dreamlike, deserted city of Kor from a poem, a place Pepita likes to escape to when the reality of the war and over-crowded London become unbearable to her, to Arthur.

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Mysterious Kor Summary

Born and raised in Ireland, when Bowen married, she moved to London where she lived and wrote before, during and after the Blitz. Her beautiful landscapes hardly evoke war but rather burst forth in light and color, nature, flowers, trees and life. Their thoughts and dialogues rollick along in quick, cheeky cadences. Sunday Afternoon takes place in the Irish countryside outside Dublin.

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Mysterious Kor

I think it had such an impact on me because of two things: the relationships between the three characters — a young woman called Pepita, her boyfriend Arthur and her flatmate Callie — and the captivating images of a deserted, endless, moonlit city that is both wartime London and the ghost city Kor. The setting is the city at night, at the entrance to a park, near an Underground station from which Pepita emerges with Arthur, a soldier home on leave from the war. I found the most striking aspect of the story to be the stunning descriptions of the moonlit night and how they manage to hint at the atmosphere of London during the Second World War. The way people are described in this story is also unusual; they look at each other without expression or seem to move mechanically, obeying commands.

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Mysterious Kor by Elizabeth Bowen

Early in the story, Pepita talks to Arthur about her dreams of mysterious Kor, the forsaken city of a poem she quotes. Very romantic. During wartime, a nice escape dream for a young couple. And in some ways I was right. But little did I know that Bowen was about to double down on the Kor metaphor. As a result, what began seemingly as a war-torn romance story becomes a very dark, misty, somber, resonant story about an entire generation, an entire country, caught in the tragedy of war. When she did not at once answer, he turned her hand over, in anguish, inside his grasp.

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