Monday, June 21, 2010

Nausea part Deux

The fellow above is one Jean-Paul Sartre, born this day 1905 in Paris, France. Since I have already made the main character of one his most famous works my hero, I figured I should give the same title to the guy would created the character. He was born the son of a French naval captain who died when Sartre was only 15 months old. When he was 12 his mother remarried, and moved to La Rochelle. As a teenager, Sartre became interested in philosophy, and earned a doctorate in philosophy. While doing this, he met another heroine of my day Simone de Beauvoir, and they begin there long on again, off again romance. It was in 1938 that Sartre wrote "Nausea" the book that was in many ways to become a sort of existential "bible." It is a great, eye-opening, depressing book, and I have read it about 3 times, and each time I learn something about myself. The mark of a great book is exactly that, something you can read multiple times, and still no reach the bottom. Another famous of work of his is the play "No Exit" that contains one of the all time great lines in literature "Hell is other people." If you have to deal with other people on a day to day basis, you will understand what that means, and how true it is. Sartre was the first person to win, and then turn down the Nobel Prize (in 1964), stating that he did not want to be "transformed" by the award. He other masterpiece "Being and Nothingness" has sailed over my head (like most things do), but the one thing I managed to take from it was the crux of his argument that existence precedes essence. Ponder on that for a while, and see if you can understand and appreciate it. I will just crawl back to rereading "Nausea" until I sort it all out in my head. So, for that one wonderful book, and a lot of other important achievements in the world of philosophy that I am not bright enough to understand, Jean-Paul Sartre (June 21st, 1905-April 15th, 1980, at the age of 74 of edema of the lung), you are my (300th) hero of the day.

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