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Gombrowicz, Witold (Translated by Alaistair Hamilton). PORNOGRAFIA. New York City, NY: Grove Press, 1966. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. 191 pages. Fine/Fine.

The author's third novel. One of the greatest novels of the 20th century. The first appearance of the title in English and in the United States. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions, of which there are now legion. Published in a very small and limited first print run as a hardcover original only. The First Edition is now rare. Presents Witold Gombrowicz's "Pornografia" in a felicitous English translation. Despite its provocative title (or rather, because of it), it's a novel of ideas, a philosophical fable which posits the subversive notion that the (healthy) life of the body is the only antidote to the (corrupted) life of the mind. Tragically, the inevitable form "Enlightenment" rationality has led to in our time is its exact opposite, barbarism. Writing in the great Polish tradition of nihilism, Gombrowicz asks: How can any modern artist have full faith in reason when he has witnessed the unthinkable brutality of so-called civilized, rational individuals, most notably those inhabiting the world's most civilized and rational nation (Germany) ? Eerily prescient, Gombrowicz and his great novel anticipate George Steiner's portrait of the Nazi who commits genocide during the day and plays Schubert at night, the protagonist-thug who worships Beethoven in Anthony Burgess' "A Clockwork Orange", and the ineffably cultivated monster-villains in Ian Fleming's James Bond novels, who are all asexual whereas Bond is the ultimate stud/sex machine. "I do not believe in a non-erotic philosophy. I do not trust any de-sexualized idea" (Witold Gombrowicz). Amen. An absolute "must-have" title for Witold Gombrowicz collectors. This title is a modern classic. This is one of very few copies of the First American Edition/First Printing still available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. Most copies available online are subsequent editions or have major flaws. A rare copy thus. One of the greatest writers of the 20th century. A fine copy. (SEE ALSO OTHER WITOLD GOMBROWICZ TITLES IN OUR CATALOG). ISBN 0394173066. $100.00

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