What is the point of Charles Bukowski?

 Can someone tell me the point of Charles Bukowski? After reading two of his books: ‘The Post Office’ and ‘Hollywood’, I couldn’t help but feel dissatisfied with them, especially as they both ended ‘and then I wrote this book.’ All they seem to do is process these ‘complex’ characters who are at the bottom end of society through basic situations. Bukowski only commentates on his life and does not show any admirable qualities except honesty, and even uses this virtue in a downtrodden way. He celebrates only his vices and hates everything purely on principle, as society appears to hate him, and yet it gives him a job and a reason to carry on.

 I could not relate to ‘Hollywood,’ due to its setting heavily being in the LA film industry, and I did not care for his glorifying of being a drunken fool. In the book he is asked “Who would care for the life of a drunk?” And I can’t believe that anyone would proudly and genuinely stand up and say they would, not the life of Henry Chinaski anyway.

 When I read a book I feel the need to have gained something from the experience, not made to feel it is a horrible waste of time and money. This is obviously where I can not connect with Mr. Bukowski. Yes, he exposes organisations for who they are, but he forgets the fundamental point of writing; to inspire and entertain, rather than keep a meagre existence going and sell his readers short.


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  1. #1 by michaelnail on March 5, 2010 - 5:47 am

    Your experience of is books is his revenge on you, as a member of society, for looking down on him. How egotistical it is of society in general to assume that all books re written for it simply because all books have prices! He has teased us into answering our own question, and “won” in the process.

    All of what I said just now is probably wrong, but it was a funny thought at least.

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