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When Pessoa died in 1935, a few years short of 50, he left behind a trunk of mostly unpublished writing in a variety of languages; his Lisbon publishers and variously translators are still sifting them. This perpetually unclassifiable and unfinished book of self-reflective fragments was first published in Portuguese in 1982, and it is arguably Pessoa's masterpiece. Four previous English translations, all published in 1991, were compromised either by abridgement, poor translation or error-laden source texts. While he's now a Pessoa veteran-having edited and translated Fernando Pessoa & Co.: Selected Poems, the 1999 PEN Award for Poetry in Translation winner-Zenith's first pass at this book was one of the four misses. He bases this new translation on his own Portuguese edition of 1998, and has done an admirable job in bringing out the force and clarity in Pessoa's serpentine and sometimes opaque meditations. Pessoa often wrote as various personae (as Pessoa & Co. carefully demonstrated); Disquiet is no exception, being putatively the work of "Bernardo Soares, assistant bookkeeper in the city of Lisbon." Thus it is impossible to ascribe the book's anti-humanist logophilia directly to the author: "I weep over nothing that life brings or takes away, but there are pages of prose that have made me cry." That is just one of many permutations of similar sentiments, but the genius of Pessoa and his personae is that readers are left weighing each and every such sentence for sincerity and truth value.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
“This superb edition of The Book of Disquiet is . . . a masterpiece.” —John Lanchester, The Daily Telegraph“Pessoa’s rapid prose, snatched in flight and restlessly suggestive, remains haunting, often startling. . . . There is nobody like him.” —W. S. Merwin, The New York Review of Books“Extraordinary . . . a haunting mosaic of dreams, autobiographical vignettes, shards of literary theory and criticism and maxims.” —George Steiner, The Observer
"I plan to use this book every year in my course at Yale. Thanks for making it available." —K. David Jackson, Yale University
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Now and then a book of creative genius floats up out of the ocean of literature. This is one of those special books, in this case the Joyce or Kafka of Portugal who never published... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Lewis Baker
Stunning tract of sublime thoughts and feelings by a sentient being besieged by humans, weather, doubts, and existence.Published 2 months ago by Ian Muldoon
I keep this book by my bedside table. It helped me get through tough times, and for some reason it's like Pessoa says exactly what I'm thinking. Read morePublished 2 months ago by M.O
I purchased this book when I was maybe 16, I am now 29. I have been reading it on and off, over and over the whole time. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Allison Fischer
"The Book of Disquiet" is composed of Pessoa's un-finished and un-published work.Published 3 months ago by Francisco Muro
Entertaining bits but don't try to read it straight thru.. it is better read in the manner in which it was written.Published 5 months ago by hot4hypatia