|About the Book|
Profundity wedded to supreme style characterizes the dazzling philosophical essays of E. M. Cioran. The Fall into Time is the second of this Rumanian-born writers books to be translated into English, and it cannot but enhance his growing reputationMoreProfundity wedded to supreme style characterizes the dazzling philosophical essays of E. M. Cioran. The Fall into Time is the second of this Rumanian-born writers books to be translated into English, and it cannot but enhance his growing reputation in the English-speaking world as a modern philosophical writer of the first rank.Who other than E. M. Cioran could write: Whatever his merits, a man in good health is always disappointing. Or: Nature has been generous to none but those she has dispensed from thinking about death. Or again: If each of us were to confess his most secret desire, the one that inspires all his plans, all his actions, he would say: I want to be praised. Cioran has been variously described as a skeptic, a pessimist, an existentialist. But none of these labels quite fits. Ciorans is a unique voice, one that comes - elegantly, ironically, pointedly - out of the void to describe the modern predicament with an almost excruciating sharpness. Our determination, he writes, to banish the irregular, the unexpected, and the misshapen from the human landscape verges on indecency- that certain tribesmen still choose to devour their surplus elders is doubtless deplorable, but I cannot conclude that such picturesque sybarites must be exterminated- after all, cannibalism is a model closed economy, as well as a practice likely to appeal, some day, to an overpopulated planet.Susan Sontag has declared E. M. Cioran to be the most distinguished figure writing today in the tradition of Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, and Wittgenstein. St.-John Perse, the Nobel prize-winning poet, has hailed him as one of the greatest French writers to honor our language since the death of Paul Valery.The Fall into Time brilliantly continues what Cioran himself has called an autobiography in the form of his thoughts. The book has been translated by Richard Howard, winner of the 1970 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry.