Impossible Object

Impossible Object

by Nicholas Mosley


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Impossible Object by Nicholas Mosley

"The object of life is impossible; one cuts out fabrication and creates reality. A mirror is held to the back of the head and one's hand has to move the opposite way from what was intended." In these closing lines from Impossible Object, one has embodied both Nicholas Mosley's subject of love and imagination, as well as his unmatched lyric style. In eight carefully connected stories that are joined by introspective interludes on related subjects, the author pursues the notion, through the lives of a couple seen by different narrators, that "those who like unhappy ends can have them, and those who don't will have to look for them." The impossible object of the title, "the triangle that can exist in two dimensions but not in three," is a controlling symbol for the impossibility of realizing the good life unless one recognizes the impossibility of attaining it: only then can it be possible to realize it, through a kind of renunciation, especially in "a sophisticated, corrupt, chaotic world." Such a provocative theme, comic or tragic by turns, was met by critics in 1968 as brilliant, insightful, intense, and moving, but especially original.

"Mosley is one of the most interesting and gifted English novelists writing today." (New Statesman)

"Mosley must be one of the most compelling writers in the English language today." (Joyce Carol Oates)

"This is black art . . . tricky, brilliant. . . . I admire this novel very much." (John Leonard, New York Times)

"Mosley's very special talent is for describing the sensations experienced within a cocoon of dismay and terror." (London Sunday Times)

"One of the most fascinating novels of the last generation." (Joseph McElroy)

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781564784650
Publisher: Dalkey Archive Press
Publication date: 11/28/1985
Series: British Literature Series
Pages: 219
Sales rank: 899,992
Product dimensions: 5.58(w) x 8.58(h) x 0.66(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Born in London, Mosley was educated at Eton and Balliol College, Oxford and served in Italy during the Second World War, winning the Military Cross for bravery. He succeeded as 3rd Baron Ravensdale in 1966 and, on the death of his father on 3 December 1980, he also succeeded to the Baronetcy. His father, Sir Oswald Mosley, founded the British Union of Fascists in 1932 and was a supporter of Benito Mussolini. Sir Oswald was arrested in 1940 for his antiwar campaigning, and spent the majority of World War II in prison. As an adult, Nicholas was a harsh critic of his father in "Beyond the Pale: Sir Oswald Mosley and Family 1933-1980" (1983), calling into question his father's motives and understanding of politics. Nicholas' work contributed to the 1998 Channel 4 television programme titled 'Mosley' based on his father's life. At the end of the mini-series, Nicholas is portrayed meeting his father in prison to ask him about his national allegiance. Mosley began to stammer as a young boy, and attended weekly sessions with speech therapist Lionel Logue in order to help him overcome the speech disorder. Mosley says his father claimed never really to have noticed his stammer, but feels Sir Oswald may have been less aggressive when speaking to him than he was towards other people as a result.

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