Romanian-born E.M. Cioran moved to Paris at the age of 26, remaining there nearly six decades until his death in 1995. He was called "a sort of final philosopher of the Western world" and "the last worthy disciple of Nietzsche"; the bleak aphorisms of All Gall Is Divided make a strong case for either appellation. "With every idea born in us," he declares early on, "something in us rots." Throughout the book, he addresses the futile attempts of man to impose meaning on a meaningless existence--"That there should be a reality hidden by appearances is, after all, quite possible; that language might render such a thing would be an absurd hope"--and nurses an ongoing fascination with the possibilities death holds for release from life's madness. (When the Dead Kennedys sang, "I look forward to death / This world brings me down," they might as well have been taking notes from Cioran.) Grim stuff, but presented in brilliant, crystalline form--particularly in the translation by Richard Howard, which retains Cioran's cold, detached viewpoint.
All Gall is Divided
First English edition: New York, NY, U.S.A.: Arcade Publishing, 1999
Translated from the French by Richard Howard
Hardcover, 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall
Syllogismes de l'amertume
Première édition: Paris, Gallimard, 1952
188 pages, 118 x 185 mm. Collection Les Essais (No 52)