Sunday, January 23, 2011

Help Me Choose!

Philosophical and psychological and "Religious" stuff:

1. Notes From Underground, Fyodor Dostoevsky

Pretty short, but pretty heavy. It's a bout a man who criticizes himself and the society. Setting in Russia.

2. The Plague, Albert Camus.

Absurdism. An allegorical novel about the society.

(Simplified) Relationship between existentialism, absurdism and nihilism
Atheistic existentialismTheistic existentialismAbsurdismNihilism
1. There is such a thing as meaning orvalueYesYesYesNo
2. There is inherent meaning in the universe (either intrinsic or from God)NoMaybe, but humans must have faith to believe there isMaybe, but humans can never know itNo
3. Individuals can create meaning in life themselvesYes, it is essential that they doYes, but that meaning must incorporate GodYes, but it must face the absurd and it must be individual by the "absurd creation" in order to have meaning and senseNo, because there is no such meaning to create
4. The pursuit of gaining intrinsic or extrinsic meaning in the universe is possibleNo, and the pursuit itself is meaninglessYes, and the pursuit itself may have meaningNo, but the pursuit itself may have meaningNo, and the pursuit itself is meaningless
5. The pursuit of constructed meaning is possibleYes, thus the goal of existentialismYes, thus the goal of existentialismNoNo
6. There is a solution to the individual's desire to seek meaningYes, the creation of one's own meaningYes, the creation of one's own meaning before GodYes, but it is based on the individual's personal meaning since it's impossible to know the inherent meaning in the universe (if one exists)No

sourced from: wikipedia.

3. The Stranger, Albert Camus.

This sounds more interesting. The synopsis is more easier to follow chronologically and it's about murder. Also something about Absurdism.

4. The Fall, Albert Camus.

Pretty short. Something about self-conflict and hipocrisy.

5. The Unbearable Lightness Of Being, Milan Kundera.

Something about existentialism and sex.

6. The Bridge of San Luis Rey, Thornton Wilder.

Pretty short. Kind of interesting. It's about a priest who witnesses five people perishing due to a collapsed bridge in Peru. He compiles a book about those five people to answer his own question of why God let that happen. It's about direction and meaning in life beyond one's own will.

7. Nausea, Jean-Paul Sarte

Existentialism. About solitude, reality and commitment. Wait, why are the profiles described in these existentialism novels seem to match my personality in some parts?? uh-oh..

8. Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoevsky

Right to murder? Moral dilemmas. Pretty short. Something like Tell-Tale Heart. Something about nihilism.

9. Children of Gebelawi, Naguib Mahfouz.

Islam, Christianity, Judaism versus Science. Not much info.

About India:

A House For Mr. Biswas

about independence and meritocracy somewhat somewhere along the lines as The White Tiger, aside from India's political and socio-economic issues.

The God Of Small Things, Arundhati Roy

Synopsis hard to follow on wiki, but it's basically Indian literature all right.

Oh, how about Q&A by Vikas Swarup?

Imma check out the literature styles now. See if it's tolerable or not. 

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