978-0-252-06895-9 / 9780252068959

Meditations on Quixote: Translated from the Spanish by Evelyn Rugg and Diego Marin Introduction and Notes by Julian Marias


Publisher:University of Illinois Press



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About the book:

"""One of the essential experiences, the greatest perhaps, is Cervantes...Alas! If only we knew with certainty the secret of Cervantes' style, of his manner of approaching things, we would have found out everything.""In "Meditations on Quixote", Jos Ortega y Gasset presents a powerful case for integrating literature into experience. Through a series of ""essays in intellectual love,"" Ortega explores the aim of philosophy: to carry a given fact (a person, a book, a landscape, an error, a sorrow) by the shortest route to its fullest significance. He then considers how literature, specifically Cervantes, contributes to realizing this aim. Arguing that ""we are all heroes in some measure,"" that ""heroism lies dormant everywhere as a possibility,"" and that ""the will to be oneself is heroism,"" Ortega urges us to integrate the possible into our conception of the real. He presents "Quixote" as a profound book, full of references and allusions to the universal meaning of life, a book that presents with maximum intensity the particular mode of human existence that is peculiarly Spanish. A call to his fellow Spaniards to join him in forging a new Spain, Ortega's "Meditations on Quixote" is also an invitation to his fellow humans to take up the challenge of literature, opening our minds and seeking all-embracing connections with the world and its people."

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