The Outsider

The Outsider


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The Outsider by Colin Wilson

Colin Wilson's classic exploration of the rebel as genius, with a new introduction by Gary Lachman.

When the upstart English writer Colin Wilson debuted on the literary scene with The Outsider in 1956, it marked one of the opening notes of the cultural revolution of the sixties. Wilson celebrated the misfit not as a figure be "fixed" and reintegrated into society, but as a lone journeyer who often had a stirring artistic, political, or spiritual innovation to convey to society.

Wilson lived this book as much as wrote it. As an impoverished 23-year-old, the Englishman slept in a tent in a London park so that he could be free of material demands to dedicate himself fully to his study. When The Outsider appeared in 1956, it became a sensation among both critics and beats, who formed the vanguard of the dawning Aquarian Age.

In Wilson's epic exploration of mystics, visionaries, literary pioneers, political troublemakers, and rule breakers of all sorts, he evoked a new kind of heroism, which changed how we view ourselves and our purpose in life. 

The Outsider is now reissued and reset in a beautiful Tarcher Cornerstone Edition, with a new introduction by Wilson's friend and biographer, Gary Lachman. This new volume coincides with Tarcher's publication of Lachman's biography of Wilson, Beyond the Robot.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780399173103
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 08/30/2016
Series: Tarcher Cornerstone Editions Series
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 407,549
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Born to a working class English household in 1931, Colin Wilson went from being the "bad boy" of the British literary scene to becoming a wide-ranging historian, novelist, critic, and philosopher. In addition to his classic study of rebellion, The Outsider, Wilson distinguished himself as one of the most prolific and grounded historians of occult and esoteric movements. A rebel until the end, Wilson later in life wrote stirring intellectual defenses of optimism, challenging the dark vogue of figures such as Bertolt Brecht and Samuel Beckett. He died in Cornwall, England, in late 2013.

Read an Excerpt


Excerpted from "The Outsider"
by .
Copyright © 2016 Colin Wilson.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Outsider Twenty Years On1
IThe Country of the Blind11
IIWorld Without Values27
IIIThe Romantic Outsider47
IVThe Attempt to Gain Control70
VThe Pain Threshold107
VIThe Question of Identity147
VIIThe Great Synthesis...178
VIIIThe Outsider as Visionary203
IXBreaking the Circuit247
Postscript to the Outsider289

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The Outsider 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! What a wonderful suprise. Finally, proof that I'm NOT crazy and most importantly not alone. :) It's can be a difficult read at times, but worth it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It is everything that I had hoped to come across in my self inflicted mental wondering and vagabond days. When I am perplexed within thought, I always come back to Mr. Wilson with the inspiration that he has casted upon me from the genius of within.
NocturneKing More than 1 year ago
This book to me is a treasure,It is one that has completely changed my perspective about life,It made me feel as if i am not the only person who has felt the things that i have,It is a book that although at times is depressive and difficult to read will enlighten you and for that reason i highly recommend it,In my opinion this book will expand your mind if you are willing to invest the time into it.