Symbolism of the Pig: Background information when reading The Capital

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Capital

A Novel

by Robert Menasse

The Capital by Robert Menasse X
The Capital by Robert Menasse
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Jun 2019, 416 pages
    Apr 7, 2020, 432 pages


  • Rate this book

Book Reviewed by:
Dean Muscat
Buy This Book

About this Book

Symbolism of the Pig

This article relates to The Capital

Animal Farm by George Orwell book coverIn addition to having a very real fugitive pig running through the streets of Brussels, Robert Menasse deploys a pig leitmotif throughout The Capital that takes on a wealth of significance across the novel. Characters discuss the value of pig's ears, and pork is served in a succulent cherry beer sauce. Even fictional pigs such as Babe, Miss Piggy and Peppa Pig are referenced.

As Menasse goes on to philosophize through the character of Professor Kurt van der Koot, the symbol of the pig has been made to act as "good and evil, fortune and disaster, sentimental love, contempt and deep-seated hatred, eroticism and wickedness. It was the only animal which as a metaphor covered the entire breadth of human emotions and philosophies, from the pig in clover to the filthy pig...he even ventured into the political realm and discussed the concepts of the 'Jewish pig' and 'Nazi swine'." It is fascinating to discover how many contradicting meanings one animal can come to represent.

In the ...

Subscribers Only

This article is only available to members at this time, but you can read these articles for free.

About Membership

Member Login

Library Patron Login

Award Winners

  • Book Jacket: Becoming
    by Michelle Obama
    Voted 2019 Best Nonfiction Award Winner by BookBrowse Subscribers

    BookBrowse hosted a Book Club ...
  • Book Jacket: Butterfly Yellow
    Butterfly Yellow
    by Thanhha Lai, Daniel Suarez
    Voted 2019 Best Young Adult Award Winner by BookBrowse Subscribers

    As readers, many of us hope ...
  • Book Jacket: Olive, Again
    Olive, Again
    by Elizabeth Strout
    Voted 2019 Best Fiction Award Winner by BookBrowse Subscribers

    It's been a big year for literary ...
  • Book Jacket: Solitary
    by Albert Woodfox
    Voted 2019 Best Debut Author Award Winner by BookBrowse Subscribers

    According to statistics from ...

Book Club
Book Jacket
Evening in Paradise
by Lucia Berlin

"Berlin's new book is a marvel, filled with deeply touching stories about lives on the fringes."—NPR

About the book
Join the discussion!

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Ordinary Girls
    by Jaquira Díaz

    Reminiscent of Tara Westover's Educate and Roxane Gay's Hunger--a memoir that reads as electrically as a novel.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Butterfly Yellow


Winner of the BookBrowse Award for Best Young Adult Novel, and the overall highest rated book of the year!



The Big Holiday Wordplay

Enter Now

Books that     

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.