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Sartre: Nausea


If you have to have a reason (or an excuse or justification) for reading Nausea in 2008, this essay from Gabriel Josipovici in ReadySteadyBook in an essay, Borges and the Plain Sense of Things, is part of it:

Borges’ fondness for detective stories stems from his dislike for the classical novel. For the detective story, unlike the novel, accepts from the start that the logic of fiction is not the logic of life and that as a fictional construct its prime duty is to be interesting, not realistic. The novel, on the other hand, is a curious hybrid: it wants to assert at one and the same time that it is dealing with life in all its boring contingency, while at the same time telling a story which implies that life has a meaning, is always more than mere contingency. This is the secret of its hold over us, as Sartre, for one, understood so well. We open a novel, Sartre says in La Nausée, and read about a man walking down a road. The man seems free, the future open before him. At once we identify with him, for that is how our own existence seems to be to us. We too are walking down the road of life, not knowing what is to come. But the pleasure of reading a novel stems from the fact that we know that this man is in fact the subject of an adventure that is about to befall him. How do we know this? Because he is there at the start of the novel and he would not be there if nothing were going to happen to him. Thus, Sartre concludes, ‘the end is there, which transforms everything. For us the guy is already the hero of the story.’ The extraordinary power of the novel lies in this, that it makes us feel that our lives are both free and meaningful. It does not say this, for it neither needs to nor is it fully aware of it, but nonetheless that is its essence, the secret of its power.

A fuller quote of the Sartre is in the wiki:nausea



SparkNotes: Nausea


Wiki: nausea


Nausea : same text as wiki in different format


Everything2 : Nausea


Sartre and Camus: Nausea and Existentialist Humor
Richard E. Baker J. of Language and literature vol. 1, Issue 1, 2007

Essay examining Sartre’s notion of the absurd, first in his philosophy and then in his novel Nausea, in relation to Albert Camus’s seminal work The Myth of Sisyphus.


Nausea : 6 O’clock in the evening (= The Chestnut Tree )


The Flâneur By Keith Tester



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April 12, 2008 - Posted by | Camus, Jean-Paul Sartre | , ,

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