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Confessions of an English Opium-Eater
     

Confessions of an English Opium-Eater

3.3 10
by Thomas DeQuincey
 

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"I here present you, courteous reader, with the record of a remarkable period in my life: according to my application of it, I trust that it will prove not merely an interesting record, but in a considerable degree useful and instructive." So begins "The Confessions of an English Opium-Eater." Originally published in two parts in the "London Magazine" in 1821, it is a

Overview

"I here present you, courteous reader, with the record of a remarkable period in my life: according to my application of it, I trust that it will prove not merely an interesting record, but in a considerable degree useful and instructive." So begins "The Confessions of an English Opium-Eater." Originally published in two parts in the "London Magazine" in 1821, it is a gripping account of one Englishman's addiction to opium. Thomas De Quincey details the effects of his opium use and in so doing warns the reader of the dangers and terrors of serious drug addiction.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781625580061
Publisher:
Start Publishing LLC
Publication date:
11/01/2012
Series:
Unabridged Start Publishing LLC
Sold by:
SIMON & SCHUSTER
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
96
Sales rank:
1,210,958
File size:
357 KB

Meet the Author

Thomas de Quincey (1785-1859) was an English author and intellectual, best known for his Confessions of an English Opium-Eater. A number of medical practitioners have speculated on the physical ailments that inspired and underlay De Quincey's resort to opium, and searched the corpus of his autobiographical works for evidence. One possibility is "a mild ... case of infantile paralysis" that he may have contracted from Wordsworth's children. De Quincey certainly had intestinal problems, and problems with his vision - which could have been related: "uncorrected myopic astigmatism ... manifests itself as digestive problems in men." De Quincey also suffered neuralgic facial pain, "trigeminal neuralgia" - "attacks of piercing pain in the face, of such severity that they sometimes drive the victim to suicide." As with many addicts, De Quincey's opium addiction may have had a "self-medication" aspect for real physical illnesses, as well as a psychological aspect. Psychologically, he had what Alethea Hayter has called the "pariah temperament" typical of drug addicts. By his own testimony, De Quincey first used opium in 1804 to relieve his neuralgia; he used it for pleasure, but no more than weekly, through 1812. It was in 1813 that he first commenced daily usage, in response to illness and his grief over the death of Wordsworth's young daughter Catherine. In the periods of 1813-16 and 1817-19 his daily dose was very high, and resulted in the sufferings recounted in the final sections of his Confessions. For the rest of his life his opium use fluctuated between extremes; he took "enormous doses" in 1843, but late in 1848 he went for 61 days with none at all. There are many theories surrounding the effects of opium on literary creation, and notably, his periods of low usage were literarily unproductive.

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Confessions of an English Opium Eater 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love Confessions of an English Opium-eater!It's one of the best books I've ever read, the way De Quincy depicts his life, along with others just takes you to where he is,what he's experiencing,feeling, everything! I think everyone who's ever considered doing drugs should read this then make their decision.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was very interesting and entertaining. One of my favorite books.
LadyBadness More than 1 year ago
I read Murder as a Fine Art by Thomas De Qunicey last year and found it so interesting that I had to know more about the author! What better way to learn about him than to read his "Confessions?" The book covers the pros and cons of opium use, which was a fairly common practice in De Quincey's time. He describes the nightmares he suffered as a result of the opium addiction in vivid detail, making the reader understand why De Quincey did not advocate opium use, even though he was an avid user. De Quincey's account is so real and compelling that the reader can feel the lure of opium and the devastation of its continued use. This is a quick read, but provides unusual insight to the author's mind, as well as the time period.
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loved it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Joe is caca and poop 4 stars!!!!