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Nothing to be frightened of

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Two years after the best-selling Arthur & George, Julian Barnes gives us an essay on mortality that touches on faith and science and family as well as a rich array of exemplary figures who over the centuries have confronted the same questions he now poses about the most basic fact of life: its inevitable extinction. If the fear of death is the most rational thing in the world, how does one contend with it? An atheist at twenty, an agnostic at sixty, Barnes looks into the various arguments for and against and with God, and at the bloodline whose archivist, following his parents' death, he has become--another realm of mystery, wherein a drawer of mementos and his own memories (not to mention those of his philosopher brother) often fail to connect. There are other ancestors, too: the writers--most of them dead, and quite a few of them French--who are his daily companions, supplemented by composers and theologians and scientists whose similar explorations are woven into this account with an exhilarating breadth of intellect and felicity of spirit. Deadly serious, masterfully playful, and surprisingly hilarious, Nothing to Be Frightened Of is a riveting display of how this supremely gifted writer goes about his business and a highly personal tour of the human condition and what might follow the final diagnosis.
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Grouping Information

Grouped Work ID ab3b061e-5b33-7bd5-ecd4-129776fe96cb
Grouping Title nothing to be frightened of
Grouping Author barnes julian
Grouping Category book
Last Grouping Update 2020-01-20 22:42:49PM
Last Indexed 2020-01-20 23:33:44PM

Solr Details

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author Barnes, Julian.
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display_description "I don't believe in God, but I miss him." So begins this book, which is a family memoir, an exchange with his brother (a philosopher), a meditation on mortality and the fear of death, a celebration of art, an argument with and about God, and a homage to the writer Jules Renard. Barnes also draws poignant portraits of the last days of his parents, recalled with great detail, affection and exasperation. Other examples he takes up include writers, "most of them dead and quite a few of them French," as well as some composers, for good measure. Although he cautions us that "this is not my autobiography," the book nonetheless reveals much about Barnes the man and the novelist: how he thinks and how he writes and how he lives. At once deadly serious and dazzlingly playful, this is a wise, funny and constantly surprising tour of the human condition.--From publisher description.
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primary_isbn 9780307269638
publishDate 2008
Bib IdFormatFormat CategoryEditionLanguagePublisherPublication DatePhysical Description
ils:CARL0000315544 Book Books 1st American ed. English Alfred A. Knopf, 2008. 243 p. ; 22 cm.
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subject_facet Authors, English -- 20th century -- Biography
Barnes, Julian -- Childhood and youth
Barnes, Julian -- Family
Barnes, Julian -- Philosophy
Barnes, Julian -- Psychology
Barnes, Julian -- Religion
Fear of death
title_display Nothing to be frightened of
title_full Nothing to Be Frightened Of
Nothing to Be Frightened of
Nothing to be frightened of / Julian Barnes
title_short Nothing to be frightened of
topic_facet Authors, English
Barnes, Julian
Biography & Autobiography
Childhood and youth
Fear of death
Literary Criticism