Title: AS CONSCIOUSNESS IS HARNESSED TO FLESH: ...
Publisher: New York City, NY: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2012
Book Condition: Fine
Dust Jacket Condition: Fine
Edition: 1st Edition.
1st Printing. 525 pages. Published in 2012. The second volume of the author's private journals, published posthumously. One of the greatest literary texts of the 20th century. The First Hardcover Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions. Published in a small and limited first print run as a hardcover original only. Presents the second of Susan Sontag's projected three-volume journals. While "Reborn" contains memorable one-liners from the prodigious writer/intellectual, "As Consciousness Is Harnessed To Flesh" has a brilliant aphorism on nearly every page, and definitively shows Sontag to be the writer-as-aphorist par excellence. Sontag was aware of this and struggled (in vain) against it because it left her deeply unsatisfied, and worried that she may never attain true greatness. It also helps explain why she often championed the most demanding, most difficult, and quite literally, longest works of art throughout her life (Wagner as well as Canetti, Syberberg's "Our Hitler" as well as Bela Tarr's "Satantango"). The sustained "long line" was what she yearned to achieve in her own work, which she always saw as work-in-progress. As soon as she achieved something worthwhile, the first thing she needed to do was surpass it, particularly her own immense natural talent for the aphorism, the fragment, "Notes on Camp". Her marathon-runner's project was to keep on changing and pushing herself, transcending the work-already-published. The imperatives of change, of keeping an open and ever-changing mind, of being able to experience the world-at-large in order to keep growing are the central themes of her published work and her journals: "Two kinds of people: Those who are interested in self-transformation and those who are not. Both require the same amount of energy. It takes as much energy to remain the same as to change" (Susan Sontag). These aphoristic sentences sum up accurately, and in a way that could not be improved upon, not just Sontag but the American experiment-dilemma-struggle itself. And for all her attachment (and indebtedness) to Europe, Sontag was deeply, profoundly American. An absolute "must-have" title for Susan Sontag collectors. This title is a late-modern classic. This is one of few copies of the First Hardcover Edition/First Printing still available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. A scarce copy thus. Winner of the MacArthur Genius Grant, the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1977 for "On Photography", the National Book Award in 2000 for "In America", and the Jerusalem Prize in 2001. Shimon Peres, in awarding the Jerusalem Prize, described Sontag as "one of the world's finest writers and greatest minds". One of the most influential and important American writer-intellectuals of the 20th century. A fine copy. (SEE ALSO OTHER SUSAN SONTAG TITLES IN OUR CATALOG) ISBN 0374100764. Bookseller Inventory # 18547
This, the second of three volumes of Susan Sontag?s journals and notebooks, begins where the first volume left off, in the middle of the 1960s. It traces and documents Sontag?s evolution from fledgling participant in the artistic and intellectual world of New York City to world-renowned critic and dominant force in the world of ideas with the publication of the groundbreaking Against Interpretation in 1966.
As Consciousness is Harnessed to Flesh follows Sontag through the turbulent years of the 1960s?from her trip to Hanoi at the peak of the Vietnam War to her time making films in Sweden?up to 1981 and the beginning of the Reagan era. This is an invaluable record of the inner workings of one of the most inquisitive and analytical thinkers of the twentieth century at the height of her power. It is also a remarkable document of one individual?s political and moral awakening.
About the Author:
Susan Sontag (1933?2004) was the author of numerous works of non-fiction, including the groundbreaking collection of essays Against Interpretation (FSG, 1966), and of four novels, including In America (FSG, 2000), which won the National Book Award.
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