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Point Counter Point (Paperback)

Author:  Aldous Huxley Introduction:  Nicholas Mosley
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Format: Paperback
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Product Details:

Format: Paperback
ISBN-10: 1564781313
ISBN-13: 9781564781314
Sku: 30289042
Publish Date: 10/1/1996
Dimensions:  (in Inches) 8.25H x 5.75L x 1T
Pages:  432
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One of Huxley''s masterpieces one of the Modern Library''s "100 Best Works of the Century."
From the Publisher:
Huxley's lifelong concern with the dichotomy between passion and reason finds its fullest expression both thematically and formally in his masterpiece Point Counter Point. By presenting a vision of life in which diverse aspects of experience are observed simultaneously, Huxley characterizes the symptoms of "the disease of the common man" in the manner of a composer- themes and characters are repeated, altered slightly, and played off one another in a tone that is at once critical and sympathetic. First published in 1928, Huxley's harsh and cynical view of intellectual life in the '20s is populated with characters based on such celebrities of the same time as D.H. Lawrence, Katherine Mansfield, Sir Oswald Mosley, Nancy Cunard, and John Middleton Murray, as well as Huxley himself. A major work of the 20th century and a monument of literary modernism, this edition includes an introduction by acclaimed novelist Nicholas Mosley (author of Hopeful Monsters and the son of Sir Oswald Mosley). Along with Brave New World (written a few years later), Point Counter Point is Huxley's most concentrated attack on the scientific attitude and its effect on modern culture.Aldous Huxley's lifelong concern with the dichotomy between passion and reason finds its fullest expression both thematically and formally in his masterpiece Point Counter Point. By presenting a vision of life in which diverse aspects of experience are observed simultaneously, Huxley characterizes the symptoms of "the disease of modern man" in the manner of a composer - themes and characters are repeated, altered slightly, and played off one another in a tone that is at once critical and sympathetic. First published in 1928, Huxley's satiric view of intellectual life in the '20s is populated with characters based on such celebrities of the time as D.H. Lawrence, Katherine Mansfield, Sir Oswald Mosley, Nancy Cunard, and John Middleton Murray, as well as Huxley himself. A major work of the 20th century and a monument of literary modernism, this edition includes an introduction by acclaimed novelist Nicholas Mosley (author of Hopeful Monsters and the son of Sir Oswald Mosley). Along with Brave New World (written a few years later), Point Counter Point is Huxley's most concentrated attack on the scientific attitude and its effect on modern culture.
Annotation:
Huxley's celebrated fictional portrait of London intellectuals in the 1920s includes such characters as the decadent painter John Bidlake and his son Walter, Walter's hapless wife Marjorie Carling, the vile fascist politician Everard Webley, the thoroughly unpleasant Maurice Spandrell, and a revolutionary named Illidge. These characters are offset by Huxley's ideal couple, Mark and Mary Rampion, who provide the moral force in a novel that is often frighteningly cynical. (They may or may not be based on Huxley's friends D.H. Lawrence and Katherine Mansfield.) This satirical and unsparing vision of a particular world at a particular time is perhaps Huxley's greatest work.
Author Bio
Aldous Huxley
Aldous Huxley was the third son of Leonard Huxley, a teacher, editor, and author, and the former Julia Arnold, a schoolmistress. His paternal grandfather was the famed scientist Thomas Henry Huxley (a noted defender of the theories of Charles Darwin, and the person who coined the term "agnostic"), and a maternal great-uncle was the poet and critic Matthew Arnold. Their grandfather's mantle was taken up by Huxley's older brother Julian, who became a noted biologist. Aldous was planning on a career in medicine; he was educated at Eton and Balliol College, Oxford. When he was 14, his mother died of cancer, and three years later Huxley was stricken by an eye infection that left him blind for a year. His eyesight never recovered beyond a return of partial vision in one eye, and this led him to change his plan of studying medicine; instead he studied literature at Oxford. While he was at Oxford, his older brother Trevenen committed suicide. After completing his bachelor's degree in 1916, Huxley worked briefly as a teacher at Eton. He then moved to London and pursued a career as a literary critic and poet. In 1919 he married Maria Nys, who gave birth to their only child the next year, the same year Huxley published his first volume of stories. By 1923, Huxley had published two acclaimed novels, CHROME YELLOW and ANTIC HAY, and his reputation as one of the finest satirists of his time was established. He and Maria spent the next several years living on the Continent, and he continued to publish books, achieving great success with the novels POINT COUNTER POINT and BRAVE NEW WORLD. In 1934, upon the completion of EYELESS IN GAZA, Huxley experienced severe writer's block, along with depression and insomnia. In an effort to cure these afflictions he began practicing meditation and pursuing an interest in metaphysics. Huxley emerged from this dark period the next year, and leaving behind his famed sardonicism, embraced a more idealistic view of human potential. He and his family moved to the United States in 1937, living first at the ranch of his deceased friend D. H. Lawrence, and in 1938 settling in Southern California. Huxley worked as a screenwriter in Hollywood during the late 1930s and 1940s while continuing to write fiction and essays. His interest in metaphysics deepened over the years, and in 1953 he experimented with the hallucinogenic drug mescaline; the results of these experiments are recounted in his book THE DOORS OF PERCEPTION. In 1955, Maria Huxley died. The next year Huxley married Laura Archera, a musician, film editor, and therapist. In his final years, Huxley continued his long-established interest in travel, visiting countries around the world, often lecturing on his ideas. He published his final novel, ISLAND, in 1962, and succumbed to throat cancer the next year, on the same day John F. Kennedy was shot. Huxley is best known in the United States for BRAVE NEW WORLD, which is often assigned reading in secondary schools, but ISLAND--whose model society is much more pleasant than the one found in BRAVE NEW WORLD--also has a durable and devoted following. His early novels are fine portraits of postwar English society, and it is on these that his reputation as a literary stylist rest. The contrast between these early satires and the metaphysical and sociological concerns of his later work is stark, and readers are often fans of either his "English period" or his "American Period," but not often fans of both. No matter what works of Huxley one reads, however, one will find perceptive social observation and elegant prose. He is immortalized with a place in the jacket collage of the Beatles' SERGEANT PEPPER album.

Praise

New Republic
"'Point Counter Point' is the modern 'Vanity Fair', and Mr. Huxley is the Thackeray 'de nos jours'....It might have been said in its own day that 'Vanity Fair' was the richest novel in substance and the most comprehensive that had appeared in English. The same thing might be said today of 'Point Counter Point'." - Robert M. Lovett 12/05/1928

New York Times
"A powerful and vitriolic indictment of the intellectual world."

Outlook
"Out of colossal disillusion Huxley has made 'Point Counter Point' the most scintillating, the most bitter and the most serious of his novels. It is a notable piece of work and one of which this decade may very well be proud." 11/21/1928

New York Herald Tribune (1924-1966)
"Unflagging in its spirits and unflagging in its intelligence, throughout more than four hundred pages it vindicates Mr. Huxley's right to be considered the most able of our contemporary satirists and the most perfect representative of the mood which he describes."

Product Attributes
Product attributeBook Format:   Paperback
Product attributeNumber of Pages:   0432
Product attributePublisher:   Dalkey Archive Press
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