On the Heights of Despair indicates Cioran's first grappling with subject matters he might go back to in his mature works: melancholy and rot, absurdity and alienation, futility and the irrationality of lifestyles. It additionally provides Cioran as a gourmand of apocalypse, a theoretician of depression, for whom writing and philosophy either proportion the "lyrical virtues" that by myself bring about a metaphysical revelation.
"No glossy author twists the knife with Cioran's dexterity. . . . His writing . . . is expert with the bitterness of actual compassion."—Bill Marx, Boston Phoenix
"The darkish, existential melancholy of Romanian thinker Cioran's brief meditations is ironically bracing and life-affirming. . . . places him within the corporation of Nietzsche and Kierkegaard."—Publishers Weekly, starred review
"This is self-pity as epigram, one of these dyspeptic pronouncement that will get most folks kicked off the bed yet that has saved Mr. Cioran going for the remainder of his life."—Judith Shulevitz, New York instances publication Review
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Additional info for On the Heights of Despair
Think that there are those that can't sleep due to their perverse obsession with demise! How I want i didn't be aware of whatever approximately myself and this international! melancholy and the ugly one of the kinds of the gruesome, i locate the single whose roots are steeped in depression more odd and complicated. the opposite varieties have much less depth. you will need to be aware that the gruesome is impossible with no depth of feeling. And what depth is deeper and extra natural than depression? The ugly seems in basic terms in very adverse states, whilst nice nervousness arises from an absence of existence; the gruesome is an exaltation in negativity.
To meditate on dying and on comparable risky issues is to deal existence a mortal blow, for the brain considering such a lot of agonizing questions needs to have already got been wounded. nobody commits suicide for exterior purposes, basically due to internal disequilibrium. lower than related hostile conditions, a few are detached, a few are moved, a few are pushed to suicide. To be captivated with suicide, there has to be such internal pain that every one self-imposed obstacles holiday and not anything is left yet a catastrophic dizziness, a wierd and robust whirlwind.
The fanatic on my own preserves his strength till previous age; all others, if now not already born useless like most folks, die ahead of their time. How infrequent the genuine fanatic! will we think a global during which everyone will love every thing, an international of fanatics? Such a picture is much more attractive than clone of paradise, simply because its excesses of generosity surpass any of these in Eden. The enthusiast's skill to be continually reborn increases him above life's demoniacal temptations, the terror of nothingness, and the torments of pain.
It is easy to merely write approximately it in contradictory methods. Whoever says that he is familiar with whatever sure approximately demise exhibits that he has now not even a premonition, even though he bears it inside himself. each guy bears with him not just his lifestyles but additionally his dying. lifestyles is simply a protracted, drawn-out pain. it kind of feels to me that disappointment partakes of this discomfort. The writhings of unhappiness, do not they show suffering? those contortions, negations of attractiveness, betray rather a lot solitude that one needs to ask oneself if the physiognomy of unhappiness isn't really a style of objectifying loss of life in lifestyles.
While i used to be a scholar in Romania within the Nineteen Sixties and Nineteen Seventies, he used to be a mysterious, nearly mythological, presence. One may listen that this kind of individual existed, however it used to be very unlikely to learn him. His French books have been neither offered nor released in translation, and his Romanian books had disappeared and not using a hint, the rarest of infrequent books. even if he had departed his fatherland a few ten years prior to the battle and the Communist takeover, he was once as invisible because the so much unspeakable, or unnameable, of nonpersons.