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Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Reveries of The Solitary Walker by Jean-Jacques Rousseau


Reveries of The Solitary Walker
by Jean-Jacques Rousseau
p. 1780
Penguin Classics Edition
Translated and with an Introduction by Peter France
p. 1979

  Both The Confessions and Reveries of The Solitary Walker were published posthumously.   I can't imagine writing something like The Confessions and not getting to see it in print.  Rousseau was plagued by health problems, in particular he had to use a catheter on a daily basis- makes me squeamish just writing the words.

  Reveries of The Solitary Walker is like a coda for The Confessions, handling events- in an indirect fashion- that occurred after The Confessions concludes.  Seems like kind of a dubious title to include on the 1001 Books To Read Before You Die list- and I frankly wonder whether it made the cut in the 2010 edition. CANT WAIT TO FIND OUT.

  But basically Reveries is more "philosophical" in tone, whereas The Confessions is more biographical, so in Reveries you get a purer statement of Rousseau's philosophical believes, rather then his thoughts about what happened to him when he was a lad.

  ONLY TWO BOOKS FROM THE 1700s LEFT AFTER THIS ONE:  Julie or the New Heloise by Jean-Jacques Rousseau AND Dangerous Liasons. 

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