Key of E

Elfriede Jelinek: The Piano Teacher

The Piano TeacherMusic meets S&M. A 30-year old brilliant piano teacher who lives under the mercy of her tyrannical mother is tempted into an intense (to say the least) affair with her young male student. By definition, Erika Kohut is a virtuous and strict piano teacher by day, a voyeur and a particular fan of peep shows by night. In an attempt to escape the smothering authority of her mother, she is drawn to handsome and flirtatious Klemmer, like a butterfly to the light. But she doesn’t give in without a fight. While evading his zealous maneuvers in every possible way, Erika cannot help but fantasize about him. He will only have her eating out of the palm of his hand at a very expensive cost. Is he up for it?

Ripe with dark images, salacious scenes, The Piano Teacher is a secret passageway to the mind of a violently repressed woman who only knows one way to fulfill her deepest desires: complete surrender (whose conditions are exclusively dictated by her). Although the book lacks action, Jelinek takes her time in describing the dark corridors of Erika’s mind, while alluding to other themes such as sexual objectification, Freudian complexes and sadomasochistic fantasies.

This is by all  means a psychological erotic novel like no other. A great piece of art.


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