THE WISDOM OF THE SANDS by Saint upery Antoine de


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Posthumously published, this was under way for five years of writing and rewriting, depository of the summation, the distillation of Saint-Exupery's philosophy and wisdom. The frame which he has chosen gives the book a semblance of parable; he uses a desert prince, son of a wise king, as his narrator. His prince goes forth at night- or incognito- among his people, and ponders on the tragedies, the inadequacies of the solutions of man's problems. He has small use for the ""sedentary"" (by which he means the striving). The title under which it is published in France symbolizes both the broader vision of the harmonious city, and the personal entity of the home, to which he returns repeatedly. He views with a certain detachment the ideas of death -- love- power. But develops with some controversial facets his conception of how power should be used. He sees ""but one freedom..the freedom of the mind"" and the ultimate achievement the unity with God. The book will have for many that quality of exaltation and inspiration that characterized Lawrence's Seven Pillars of Wisdom. It is full of quotable phrases, and the temptation to mark passages for rereading is overwhelming, if only to carry out his dictum, ""A time for beginnings but ... a thrice blessed time for use and wont"". Not a book for everyone, but a book that should build by word of mouth.

Pub Date: Oct. 5th, 1950
Publisher: Harcourt, Brace