The Matter of a Life
November 26, 2013
192 pages, 5 3/4 x 8 1/4
7 b/w illus.
"Berel Lang's brilliantly nuanced book is, as far as I know, the first to successfully extract a philosophically coherent worldview from Primo Levi's artistic, biographical and essayistic writing. Such an enterprise requires tact, subtlety, and sensitivity to what is implicit and latent in a writer like Levi, whose 'clarity' masks as well as manifests the complexity of his sensibility."—Hayden White, University of California
"Lang develops a strikingly original approach to an old problem: the relation of thought and feeling to experience. Primo Levi says much that is new, and compelling, in an area where it was hard to imagine there was anything new to be said."—Howard Needler, Wesleyan University
“Professor Lang has written an informative and wide-ranging guide to the life and work of a man, who like Dante before him, had been to hell and back.”—Ian Thomson, Evening Standard
“In this concise, well-researched, unemotional account of the writer’s life and death, philosopher and Holocaust scholar Berel Lang remains scrupulously agnostic about such straightforward cause and effect.”—Tim Adams, The Observer