I am currently reading History and Utopia and marveling at its honesty and insight (it is his sixth book that I have read). It has been nearly twenty years since I have read an author who is actually able to write in a manner that is direct and uncalculating (he is a welcome breath of fresh air in the cheap, flabby world of our self-consciously 'confessional' writers). As a priest I find Cioran's "Odyssey of Rancor" the most devastatingly accurate portrait of our fallen human being that I have ever read. We do not need to worry if Cioran "speaks for all of us"--he has spoken for himself and that in the end is infinitely more truthful and didactic than any of what those legions of self-appointed spokesmen for humanity have been able to offer....

>>By father duane   (Saturday, 26 Apr 2003 20:27)

Father, are you Catholic? That someone of the cloak is immersed (6 books) themself into this aphoristic thinker's mindscape is refreshing. As a surgeon dealing w/ the insolubles of life & death, I consider my finding & reading his Temptation to Exist in 1986 a profound gift. I've read & re-read, nearly meditated upon certain aspects of his works. One that I continue to study is Tears & Saints, a canon of known & unknown saints. As hagiographer, Cioran scrutinizes their exstasies, realizing, in the process, a Nietzschean theme: the will to power. I anxiously await the publication of his Notebooks in '05.

>>By gregor   (Thursday, 29 Apr 2004 07:54)

I have a chance to write a dictionary article on E. M. Cioran and was wondering if anyone found any difficulties in the texts of On the Heights of Despair and Tears and Saints?

>>By Bob from Apollo   (Monday, 11 Oct 2004 19:00)

Bob, what kind of difficulties do you mean?

>>By victorsans   (Friday, 21 Jan 2005 02:58)

victorsans, I appreciate the opportunity you've given me to apologize for the hubristic tone of my first entry. I clearly come off as if Cioran were transparent to me. I wasn't sure what difficulties others would have with these texts. For one example, one encounters the most iconoclastic atheism alongside the most beautiful confessions of faith. So we have the difficulty, if we can call it that, of contradiction in Cioran.

>>By Bob from Apollo   (Friday, 21 Jan 2005 05:10)

Bob, I believe that being Cioran the son of a an orthodox pope, the subject of faith could not be absent in his books. In my eyes, and I might be wrong of course, he is an atheist, or maybe better yet, an anti-christian. However, as Savater and other experts on his work have said, he is so out of normal classifications, that I would not be surprised if he were a believer. There are many places, though where he speaks about the superiority of Buddhism over Christianity. Anyway, a complex character.

I guess one can enjoy his prose (Foucault called him the best French writer of the XXth Century, though, of course, he was Rumanian), his bitter yet almost volterian style, his unwillingness to make compromises.

He was a reactionary (History and Utopia shows it well) and yet, in a sense, I cannot put him close to his friend Mircea Eliade, suspceted of Nazi sympathies, or other right wing writers. He is a "reactionary" that most leftist enjoy, an atheist read by priest....

Hey, I liked the "hubristic tone" of your first entry!

>>By victorsans   (Friday, 21 Jan 2005 19:20)

For whatever it is worth, I found this website that might be interesting:

It shows a new short text from Cioran with each refresh of the page. Kind of Brian Eno cards for Cioran, I guess.

>>By victorsans   (Friday, 21 Jan 2005 22:51)

If anyone would be interested, we will try to have a public discussion of Cioran on the first weekend of April.

>>By Bob from Apollo   (Tuesday, 22 Feb 2005 03:44)

Or sometime after Easter anyway. So, if any of you would like to read some Cioran between now and then, it would be great if you could join in the discussion.

>>By Bob from Apollo   (Tuesday, 22 Feb 2005 04:18)


>>By Bob from Apollo   (Wednesday, 9 Mar 2005 14:45)

I have had an opportunity during this past week to read quite a bit from "Tears and Saints" [unless that title should be reversed . . . I make mistakes like this all the time . . .perhaps I did get it right I hope] . . . I copied out passages that I found memorable . . . and even showed some of the more striking passages to certain students in my vicinity as I was reading. One French student gave me an enthusiastic nod . . . I had mentioned Proust . . . just to get her literary approval . . . and the best she could must up was a vapid "ho-hum" but when I said Cioran her eyes lit up "ah . . .oui!" that kind of thing . . .I am assuming that he might have a rather large following in Europe.
Just some general notes here.

>>By satorotas   (Wednesday, 28 Sep 2005 16:41)

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