Nausea (1938)

by Jean-Paul Sartre

Although I would not say that I am uninterested in philosophy, it is not a subject to which I have given a great deal of attention.


Therefore, I may not be the best audience for this literary explication of existentialism.


Having said that, I found Jean-Paul Sartre's prose frequently evocative, but his hero, Roquentin, was extremely frustrating.


Jean-Paul Sartre

Indeed, his bouts of existentialist horror triggered by such commonplace realia as chairs, trees, and hands made him seem mentally disturbed. 

Of course, I don't believe that all existentialists are crazy, but I do wonder which came first, the chicken or the egg--is this philosophy a clear-eyed look at reality that naturally leads to ennui, or is it a rationale for inaction and fear constructed by highly intelligent depressives?


Perhaps Woody Allen said it best: "The mind is the most over-rated organ in the body."


If it makes us catatonic with horror at the sight of a tree, then ignorance really is bliss.


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