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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars After Europe
Steiner treats readers to a stimulating introduction of various favorite authors, chiefly, but not exclusively Jewish, 20th century, European, and all erudite but doomed. Steiner is interested in the movement of history against creativity. The Holocaust haunts and he cannot get over it. Why should he? He also offers a brief and moving autobiographical essay, in which he...
Published on September 26, 2008 by David Schweizer

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5 of 77 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Tragedy of Language
Paraphrasing Mr. Steiner, there is not much new or revealing that can be said of an important writer in one or two paragraphs. The tragic strength of Steiner's unsuccessful considerations is that we cannot conceive in which of our cognitive faculties are the ideal of pure reason and language connected together. If we drive this question to its ultimate consequences, it...
Published on October 11, 2001


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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars After Europe, September 26, 2008
This review is from: Language and Silence: Essays on Language, Literature, and the Inhuman (Paperback)
Steiner treats readers to a stimulating introduction of various favorite authors, chiefly, but not exclusively Jewish, 20th century, European, and all erudite but doomed. Steiner is interested in the movement of history against creativity. The Holocaust haunts and he cannot get over it. Why should he? He also offers a brief and moving autobiographical essay, in which he accounts for his extraordinary education both in Europe and then later in America. He has much in common with intellectuals such as Adorno, Arendt, Walter Benjamin, and other German and Austrian authors who did much to elucidate the prelude and aftermath of the catastrophe of the 20th century. Steiner's own family is from Vienna, but he was educated on the run from the Nazis, first in Paris, then in New York at the French international school. From there to the University of Chicago and to Oxford. He is grave, witty, passionate, and exciting. Like Edmund Wilson and Susan Sontag, Steiner is an explainer, an interpreter, a critic, not a creative force, but his erudition is so expansive and his passions so great that his work makes the impression finally of those creative geniuses like Eliot and Joyce who did so much to shape our century.
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30 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Did you understand the previous review?, February 27, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Language and Silence: Essays on Language, Literature, and the Inhuman (Paperback)
Referring to the preceeding review: pedantry of such a bold-faced variety, (notwithstanding the author's ignorance of current orthographical conventions) leaves one astounded and disgusted. Unless it was a joke, in which case: ha ha. The book is so much more than the reviews contained on this page would have us believe. Buy it and enjoy.
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8 of 73 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars lingustically defined and varnished brilliance, February 17, 2001
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Mordchi Levy (Jerusalem, Israel Israel) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Language and Silence: Essays on Language, Literature, and the Inhuman (Paperback)
As which a dazzling composition whose mere origins and idioms stand enthralled and benighted as one, Steiner's capability of depicting an intellectually stimulationg and provoking masterpiece redefining literature and humanity through the speculum of contradiction and flamboyant texture of obstreperous ignorence is rejuvenating, thrilling and refreshing if not disgusting and dettering both in faith and knowledge.
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5 of 77 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Tragedy of Language, October 11, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Language and Silence: Essays on Language, Literature, and the Inhuman (Paperback)
Paraphrasing Mr. Steiner, there is not much new or revealing that can be said of an important writer in one or two paragraphs. The tragic strength of Steiner's unsuccessful considerations is that we cannot conceive in which of our cognitive faculties are the ideal of pure reason and language connected together. If we drive this question to its ultimate consequences, it becomes manifest that the multiplicity of the cognitive processes become modalized not only in relation with what is itself given, but to what is not given as well, and always grammatically. I will try to explain that point more clearly: Let us suppose, for example, that the discipline of human reason constitutes the whole content for the things in themselves independent of language. This fascinatingly urgent subject remains to be appropriately dealt with. In the case of human reason it is necessary to accept that categories can never, as a whole, furnish a true and communicable science without language, because they would thereby contradict fundamental inductive principles. It remains a mystery why, in particular, the noumena (in a Kantian sense) occupy part of the sphere of our experience concerning the existence of our judgements in general, and our knowledge can not take account of the objects in space and time without language. Certainly, language is just as necessary as the practical employment of the noumena.
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Language and Silence: Essays on Language, Literature, and the Inhuman
Language and Silence: Essays on Language, Literature, and the Inhuman by George Steiner (Paperback - December 11, 1998)
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