Book Store

Posthumous Papers of a Living Author

Posthumous Papers of a Living Author

By Robert Musil
Translated by Peter Wortsman

"Musil’s linguistic facility – the merging of aim, manner and result – is virtuosic. He’s such a consummate stylist that after him Kafka may seem immature, Mann chatty, Brecht arch, Rilke precious and Walter Benjamin hermetic. . . . Peter Wortsman’s translation is splendid, succeeding . . . in capturing this author’s unique combination of quizzical authority andaustere hedonism."—New York Times Book Review

"Funny, sad and true – or rather funny because they are both sad and true – such observations are, to use a typical Musil phrase, a form of ‘daylight mysticism,’ shafts of light in a darkening world."—Chicago Tribune

This collection of exploratory pieces, short stories, and reflections was originally published in Zurich in 1936. It was the last volume Robert Musil published before his sudden death in 1942. Musil had begun to fathom the impossibility of completing his monumental masterpiece The Man Without Qualities and this volume reveals his shift to a radically different form. Musil observes a fly’s tragic struggle with flypaper, the laughter of a horse; he peers through microscopes and telescopes, dissecting both large and small. Musil’s quest for the essential is a voyage into the minute.

179 pages
Archipelago, 2006
Originally published in 1936
5.5 x 0.6 x 6.2 inches
ISBN 9780976395041
Short Stories

$16.00 $16.00