Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Peace and War

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:02 PM

This post was suggested by—

  1. A quotation from Under the Volcano :
    "A corpse will be transported by express!"
  2. The wish in a novel by Ernesto Sábato, who died Saturday, April 30,
    for a tombstone that says "PEACE"
  3. A statement by another author in this morning's post:
    "I think of myself as writing about war," said Robson….
    "I try to get away from war, but I can't.
    War forces ordinary people to behave extraordinarily."

The above Sábato novel was translated as The Angel of Darkness .
Its Spanish title was "Abaddón el Exterminador " (Abaddon the Exterminator ).

From a customer review of the novel at Amazon.com—

"Early in the book a drunken outcast will see the vision of the Great Beast of Revelation. Near the end he will tell others of what he has seen. Meanwhile Sábato, who was originally trained as a scientist, seeks out the supernatural and the mystical in order to find an antidote to Stalinism, simple-minded 'Progress' and a superficial positivism."

For a more sophisticated vision of the Beast, see The Ninth Gate.

For Abaddon in a less sophisticated antidote to positivism, see The Chronicle of Abaddon the Destroyer: The War in Heaven .

I prefer Charles Williams's approach to War in Heaven .

If there is an afterlife, perhaps Sábato's experience there will be more lively than his novel's tombstone would imply.

He may, despite his wish for heavenly peace, turn out to be (in a phrase from this morning's post) a badly needed "ghost warrior."

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