BOOK OF THE DAY:
Nausea by Jean-Paul Sartre
Jean Paul Sartre’s Nausea is exactly what you would expect when you place both words side by side. Sartre’s philosophy and outlook on existentialism lend itself to its main character, Antoine Roquentin, a French writer, in the most insufferable way the human mind could endure an existential crisis.
Antoine is a loner by nature, he has no friends and few family ties. Over time he becomes repulsed by his existence. His disgust is so overwhelming that he breeds self-hatred and a sense of madness, which he may or may have not reached, according to the reader. He must seek the meaning of life and existence; he is detaching and reattaching to his identity. There is an unfulfilled urge to know, but one he secretly knows he will not meet.
Unlike other writers with existentialists connotations, such as Camus or Dostoyevsky, Sartre captures the soul. He makes the soul bottomless, faceless and makes pain a taste, it becomes tangible, a true achievement. This is the type of desperation which prompts you to reread a novel several times. The craving does not stop.
Whether you enjoy a mind feeding philosophical conversation or not, there is a huge possibility that you will find Antoine to be pathetic and superficial in a sense. His self-hatred is more of a pretentious ideal than an authentic rage. Although Antoine is not the most relatable character, his feelings and Sartre’s portrayal are not wasted on the reader. The journaling and diary presentation of Nausea push the reader to divulge oneself into Antoine’s cause, if and only, you don’t find him to be a morbidly depressed genius with zero cause. To say he is plagued by his intellect sounds like a taunt, but it is the deepest cutting wound in Antoine’s reality.
Reads excerpt from the novel here! Get the novel here!
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