E.M. Cioran’s The Trouble With Being Born

The first month of the new year, of the new decade, even, seems to me the worst possible time to pick up a book by Emil Cioran, whose particular brand of nihilism is pessimistic even by the weighty standards of […]

E.M. Cioran’s The Temptation To Exist

You pick up Emil Cioran’s writing at your peril. Though he is sometimes witty, he is never very consoling, and if you have not yourself seen the things he describes, looking at the world through his eyes might be fatal […]

E.M. Cioran’s Anathemas And Admirations

Emil Cioran, the Romanian-born French philosopher who lived his life perpetually on the verge of suicide, seems perhaps an odd choice for a consoling figure, but that is exactly what he has become to me. The man who “provoked existence to […]

E.M. Cioran’s A Short History Of Decay

How best to describe Emil Cioran? How classify him? He is a philosopher without the philosopher’s linearity of thought, an aphorist whose every sentence achieves the heightened perfection of poetry. A Short History Of Decay was his first French work, the product […]

E.M. Cioran’s On The Heights Of Despair

The high price of knowledge is one of our most enduring tropes. Though many of us still operate in Freud’s shadow, where understanding is the first step on the journey away from suffering, we have not forgotten the price humanity paid […]