Today our fatigue feels
chronic; our anxieties, amplified. Proliferating technologies command
our attention. Many people complain of burnout, and economic instability
and the threat of ecological catastrophe fill us with dread. We look to
the past, imagining life to have once been simpler and slower, but
extreme mental and physical stress is not a modern syndrome. Beginning
in classical antiquity, this book demonstrates how exhaustion has always
been with us and helps us evaluate more critically the narratives we
tell ourselves about the phenomenon.
Medical, cultural, literary,
and biographical sources have cast exhaustion as a biochemical
imbalance, a somatic ailment, a viral disease, and a spiritual failing.
It has been linked to loss, the alignment of the planets, a perverse
desire for death, and social and economic disruption. Pathologized,
demonized, sexualized, and even weaponized, exhaustion unites the mind
with the body and society in such a way that we attach larger questions
of agency, willpower, and well-being to its symptoms. Mapping these
political, ideological, and creative currents across centuries of human
development, Exhaustion finds in our struggle to overcome weariness a more significant effort to master ourselves.
Boktitel: Exhaustion. A History
Författare: Anna Katharina Schaffner
|Anna Katharina Schaffner |
Anna Katharina Schaffner is reader in comparative literature and medical humanities at the University of Kent.
Etiketter: Nya böcker