The Wine of Absurdity: Essays on Literature and Consolation [Book Review]

Review of Metaphysics 20 (1):162-162 (1966)

West takes his title from Camus, and quotes Camus' definition of absurdity: "the division between the mind that desires and the world that disappoints." The essays, which originally appeared in periodicals, discuss Yeats, Lawrence, Sartre, Camus, Simon Weil, Graham Greene, Santayana, and other modern writers. There is no analysis, either philosophical or literary; West attempts overall estimates of each writer's contribution to the problem of absurdity, but succeeds in providing neither insights for those already familiar with the problem nor useful introductions for the uninitiated. Nor, despite the expectations aroused by the preface, do we get a very strong impression of an individual's encounter with the thinkers from whom he has learned most. In vino vacuitas.—W. B. K.
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest
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ISBN(s) 0034-6632
DOI revmetaph1966201294
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