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Sontag, Susan. ILLNESS AS METAPHOR. New York City, NY: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1978. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. 88 pages. Fine/Fine.

The author's book-length account on subject. One of the most valuable books of the 20th century. The First Hardcover Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions. Published in a small and limited first print run as a hardcover original only. The First Edition is now scarce. Presents Susan Sontag's "Illness As Metaphor". Her sustained reflection on the very real dangers of using illness as a metaphor. This landmark study was Sontag's ferocious yet coolly intellectual response to her first bout with cancer at the age of 35. Diagnosed as a terminal case and given only a few months to live, the writer survived, by her own account, partly by writing the book in her head during her long treatment. She could have written a first-person, "I-fought-and-survived" account in the bestseller manner. It is not surprising that she did not. All of Susan Sontag's work is autobiographical, but its poignant beauty lies in the fact that her personal experience is always mediated (by thinking as much as feeling) in her writing. Even though she insisted all her writing life that the point of being a writer is to give pleasure and to shake things up (rather than to give comfort), "Illness As Metaphor" reflects her genuine concern to help other cancer patients - as well as the rest of us, who are presumably healthy and cancer-free - overcome false and oppressive "thinking" about illness. The durable popular "thinking" (in other words, not thinking at all) to this day of ALL societies in the world is that illness, especially cancer, is a form of punishment by God and Nature to errant Man, which makes Sontag's feisty little book relevant and indispensable. Sontag died on December 28, 2004 at the relatively young age of 71, after a third and final bout with cancer, her work unfinished, a one-of-a-kind writer who is a heartbreaking, irreplaceable loss to contemporary life and literature. One of the ironies about her career is that despite her fame, readers and collectors never fully appreciated the magnitude of her achievement, and that she will endure long after currently fashionable and hopelessly provincial American writers are forgotten. An absolute "must-have" title for Susan Sontag collectors. This copy is very prominently and beautifully signed in black pen on the title page by Susan Sontag. It is signed directly on the page itself, not on a tipped-in page. This title is a great book. This is one of very few such signed copies of the First Hardcover Edition/First Printing still available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. Please note: Most copies available online have serious flaws. A rare signed copy thus. Winner of the MacArthur Genius Grant, the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1977 for "On Photography", the National Book Award in 2000 for "In America" and the Jerusalem Prize in 2001. Shimon Peres, in awarding the Jerusalem Prize, described Sontag as "one of the world's finest writers and greatest minds". One of the most influential and important American writer-intellectuals of the 20th century. A fine collectible copy. (SEE ALSO OTHER SUSAN SONTAG TITLES IN OUR CATALOG). ISBN 0374174431. $200.00

This item is available for purchase. This web page was most recently updated on October 16, 2019.