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Dreams and Destinies Hardcover – October 30, 1999

ISBN-13: 978-0312212896 ISBN-10: 0312212895 Edition: 1st

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Like writers as diverse as William S. Burroughs and Graham Greene, the French novelist and essayist Yourcenar (1903-1987) was fascinated enough by dreams to publish a diary of hers, which has now been translated some 60 years after its French edition and expanded with her partial notes for an intended revised version. Taken from the period when she was writing her novel A Coin in Nine Hands, Yourcenar's meticulous explorations of her dream life read like prose poems, unencumbered by either Freudian interpretative rigidity or Surrealist dream idolatry. The dreams' phantasmally evocative landscapes and details are as eerie as anything in a Coleridge poem, David Lynch film or Grimm fairy tale: the stagnant pond of her oldest nightmare portending suicide, a basket she discovers containing still-beating human hearts, or a lover wrapped like a mummy in strips of cloth inscribed in indecipherable letters. Prof. Friedman's accumulation of material for a revised edition suggests that Yourcenar's half-finished personal philosophy of dreams would have encompassed color symbolism and oneiric sensuality. Her original "authenticated nocturnal adventures" are as rigorously composed as her essays, more lushly written than her fiction and underscore her work from the lucidly hallucinatory essay "The Dark Brain of Piranesi" to her nightmarish medieval novel, The Abyss.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Instead of a biography, this dream journal is Yourcenar's last work to be translated.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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