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Homo Irrealis: Essays

Homo Irrealis: Essays cover

Homo Irrealis: Essays

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The New York Times–bestselling author of Find Me and Call Me by Your Name returns to the essay form with his collection of thoughts on time, the creative mind, and great lives and works

Irrealis moods are a category of verbal moods that indicate that certain events have not happened, may never happen, or should or must or are indeed desired to happen, but for which there is no indication that they will ever happen. Irrealis moods are also known as counterfactual moods and include the conditional, the subjunctive, the optative, and the imperative—all best expressed in this book as the might-be and the might-have-been.

One of the great prose stylists of his generation, André Aciman returns to the essay form in Homo Irrealis to explore what time means to artists who cannot grasp life in the present. Irrealis moods are not about the present or the past or the future; they are about what might have been but never was but could in theory still happen. From meditations on subway poetry and the temporal resonances of an empty Italian street to considerations of the lives and work of Sigmund Freud, C. P. Cavafy, W. G. Sebald, John Sloan, Éric Rohmer, Marcel Proust, and Fernando Pessoa and portraits of cities such as Alexandria and St. Petersburg, Homo Irrealis is a deep reflection on the imagination’s power to forge a zone outside of time’s intractable hold.

André Aciman is the New York Times bestselling author of Call Me By Your Name, Out of Egypt, Eight White Nights, False Papers, Alibis, Harvard Square, Enigma Variations, and Find Me. He's the editor of The Proust Project and teaches comparative literature at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He lives with his wife in Manhattan.

ISBN: 9780374171872

ISBN-10: 9780374171872

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Publication Date: 01/19/2021 - 12:00am

On Sale: 01/19/2021 - 12:00am

Pages: 256

Language: English

Categories

Literary Collections / Essays

Art / Individual Artists / Essays

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