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Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Nicely clean ex library issue with a few usual marks/clean&clear mylar jacket/a small remainder mark at the lower edge of pages. The text/pages are bright, clean and free from other imperfections with rather light handling wear. A very good spine, corners and page edge condition
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Field Notes from Elsewhere: Reflections on Dying and Living Hardcover – October 1, 2009

4.3 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Mark Taylor's Field Notes from Elsewhere is an intoxicating whirl of a book, an engine of thought and feeling that touches on everything that counts most to us: living and dying, families, faith, friendship, and the quest to ground oneself in the real. To the best of my knowledge, it is a work without precedent.

(Paul Auster, author of The New York Trilogy, among other novels)

Mark Taylor is without peer as the most important postmodern secular theologian working today. This new work is beautiful and brilliant, moving and powerful in the extreme, always smart, and often deeply insightful. I found that I could not put it down.

(David Miller, Syracuse University)

In olden days it was not all that rare for a person to die and miraculously return to tell what they experienced in that journey to the Other world. Unlike Dante's Divine Comedy, which represents a journey predictably and orderly, Mark Taylor's personal version of the space of death is anything but. Shocked witless but playing it cool with family and Kierkegaard as his spirit-allies, the past and all that makes life is treasured, measured, realigned, demolished, and above all seen anew, thanks to the terrible closeness of the grim reaper from whom Taylor broke free so as to liberate philosophy and divinity itself.

(Michael Taussig, Columbia University)

Mark Taylor has been a magisterial but impersonal presence in his pathbreaking work on art, religion, and the ebbing of modernity. In Field Notes from Elsewhere, he takes us out of the library and into his life in a series of death-haunted meditations. Neither a summation nor a memoir, Field Notes from Elsewhere is an epilogue offered, provocatively, as the prologue to a sequel that someone other than Taylor must write.

(Jack Miles, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for God: A Biography)

Book Description

"If you cannot dance with death, you cannot embrace life."

--This text refers to the Unknown Binding edition.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press (October 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0231147805
  • ISBN-13: 978-0231147804
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,145,137 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Taylor is a true philosopher that reflectes on what genuinely matters. This is a powerful and personal, outspoken, touching and uncompromising book by a leading American philosopher. Mark Taylor who has demonstrated his scholarly brilliance and literary genius in s series of highly original books, lives out to the grand promise of philosophy with these accessible, nontechnically written "field notes". Examine life, create better life through thinking: such is the original call of philosophy, the torch that Taylor carries. This is content philosophy at its best. Taylor demonstrates reflective courage on the great themes of life with full force and integrity. This is Taylor, a tremendeously productive and creative thinker of an astonishingly wide range and imagination, investigating the fundamentals of what makes us human.

Reading the book, you cry, and celebrate life more.
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Format: Hardcover
I think I am not the ideal reader for this book - I am more on the ethical, less on the metaphysical/existential end of the continuum of readership around this sort of topic - but it is a truly striking and engaging piece of work - strongly recommended. (Full disclosure: Mark Taylor is my Columbia colleague, so I am perhaps predisposed in favor; but the book is truly well worth your while...)
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Format: Hardcover
"Field Notes from Elsewhere" is on the ROROTOKO list of cutting-edge intellectual nonfiction. Professor Taylor's book interview ran here as cover feature on October 30, 2009.
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Format: Hardcover
The author's near-death experience appears to have made him exceptionally self-absorbed and smug (assuming he wasn't that way before). There are many pictures of himself, boring accounts of his youth and family, and many expressions of how he has found a superior way of life and a superior attitude which he expects us to admire. Along the way, he offers an occasional wise aphorism.
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