Thursday Book: A Question of Mind over Reading Matter ; the Anatomy of Melancholy by Robert Burton; Introduction by William H Gass (Granta/New York Review Books, Pounds 20)
Dillon, Brian, The Independent (London, England)
THE GLOOMY aphorist EM Cioran wrote of this book that it had "the best title ever invented" but the work itself was more or less indigestible. If the literature of depression tends toward attenuated speech patterns (the crippled syntax of a Beckett or Duras), then Burton's treatise is a gargantuan anomaly, a monster of eloquence. Depressive silence gives way to a verbal voraciousness that devours language and learning alike. First published in 1621, The Anatomy ran to a paltry 900 pages. Burton spent the rest of his life revising a book that now clocks in at a potentially soul- destroying 1392 pages. But sheer size should not put the modern reader off one of the most astonishing …
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Publication information: Article title: Thursday Book: A Question of Mind over Reading Matter ; the Anatomy of Melancholy by Robert Burton; Introduction by William H Gass (Granta/New York Review Books, Pounds 20). Contributors: Dillon, Brian - Author. Newspaper title: The Independent (London, England). Publication date: August 3, 2001. Page number: 5. © 2009 The Independent - London. Provided by ProQuest LLC. All Rights Reserved.
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