EARWITNESS: Fifty Characters by Elias Canetti

EARWITNESS: Fifty Characters

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Allegorical character typings by the European philosopher and litterateur best known for Crowds and Power and the novel Auto-da-F≤. For instance: ""The blind man is not blind by birth, but he became blind with little effort. He has a camera, he takes it everywhere, and he just loves keeping his eyes closed."" Or: ""The humility-forebear nestles with destiny, the inevitable is his bliss. It is useless saying no to the inevitable, so he says yes before it even knocks."" There's the ""misspeaker"" who only talks to people he knows beforehand won't understand him--and can't speak to those who might. The woman who is always tired except for the energy she finds to tell anyone and everyone she's tired. A few of these sketches have some poetic leavening, but on the whole the book wears a self-conscious cloak out of proportion to its seriousness. Sardonic, sometimes amusing, but hardly more than literary variations on Games People Play.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1979
Publisher: Seabury