Departures

Departures

by Paul Zweig
     
 

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Departures is Paul Zweig’s celebration of life and love. Zweig thought of himself as a sojourner, a contemporary Wandering Jew, a man with “a loose wire in his genes.” He led a number of distinct lives: as a Jewish child in Brooklyn and on a farm in the Catskills; as a literature student at Columbia; as a young exile who spent a decade

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Overview

Departures is Paul Zweig’s celebration of life and love. Zweig thought of himself as a sojourner, a contemporary Wandering Jew, a man with “a loose wire in his genes.” He led a number of distinct lives: as a Jewish child in Brooklyn and on a farm in the Catskills; as a literature student at Columbia; as a young exile who spent a decade in Paris transforming himself into a French intellectual, absorbing the language, sex, culture, and leftist politics; and as an American man-of-letters who produced a steady stream of poems, essays, and wide-ranging works of literary scholarship and criticism. In 1978, at the age of forty-three, he abruptly entered a new life—”the life of the dying”—which he inhabited for the next six years. His writing was guided by a steely determination to hold the more pressing and distorting sentiments—self-pity, regret, anger, fear—at bay for the sake of his lucidity, which became his way through the world of cancer. This memoir stands as a testament to the passion and spirit with which Zweig lived and to the dignity that he brought to his final years.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“An elegant and moving memoir.” —USA Today
 
“At a time when writers often write with calculated eccentricity rather than out of a fateful obsession, and compose memoirs that seem devoid of self-understanding, [Zweig’s] raw, original studies of culture and his masterly autobiographies provide a rich diet for famished readers.” —Lee Siegel, New York Times
 
“[Zweig] was never more expressive or appealing than in these final memoirs . . . A moving document of personal integrity.” —Joseph Frank
 
“The essays are so evocative of their time and place, so perfectly pitched, so persuasive and intense that they form a brilliant kaleidoscopic glimpse of a man in search of himself . . . A remarkable literary legacy.” —Newsday
 
“There is no better vision of the ecstasy and wonder of our lives. There is no better chronicle of lost youth.” —Gerald Stern

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781590512913
Publisher:
Other Press, LLC
Publication date:
03/15/2011
Pages:
240
Product dimensions:
5.00(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.70(d)

Meet the Author

Paul Zweig grew up in Brooklyn, but left New York to explore Paris in the 1950s.  After a decade in France, he returned to America and established himself as a respected poet, critic, and professor. He wrote five books in the last ten years of his life: Departures, Walt Whitman: The Making of a Poet, The Heresy of Self-Love, Three Journeys: An Automythology, and The Adventurer: The Fate of Adventure in
the Western World.

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