The Education of the Stoic: The Only Manuscript of the Baron of Teive

Front Cover
Exact Change, 2005 - Fiction - 81 pages
0 Reviews
"I transferred to Teive my speculations on certainty, which lunatics have in greater abundance than anyone." Portuguese author Fernando Pessoa (1888-1935) was a multitude of writers: his works were composed by "heteronyms," alter egos with distinct biographies, ideologies, influences, even horoscopes. "The Education of the Stoic" is the only work left by the Baron of Teive, who, having destroyed all his previous attempts at literary creation, and about to destroy himself, explains "the impossibility of producing superior art." The baron's manuscript is found in a hotel-room drawer--not unlike editor and translator Richard Zenith's own discovery, while conducting research in the Pessoa archives, of a small black notebook whose contents had never been transcribed. In it he found the missing pieces of this short but trenchant complement to Pessoa's major prose work, "The Book of Disquiet." Pessoa himself noted that despite their dialectical differences, the middle-class author of "The Book of Disquiet" (assistant bookkeeper Bernardo Soares) and the aristocrat Teive, "are two instances of the very same phenomenon--an inability to adapt to real life."
"There are in Pessoa echoes of Beckett's exquisite boredom; the dark imaginings of Baudelaire (whom he loved); Melville's evasive confidence man; the dreamscapes of Borges" --"Voice Literary Supplement"
"The humorist who never smiles and makes our blood run cold, the inventor of other poets and self-destroyer, the author of paradoxes clear as water, and like water, dizzying, the mysterious one who doesn't cultivate mystery, mysterious as the moon at noon, the taciturn ghost of the Portuguese midday--who is Pessoa?" --Octavio Paz

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

The Duel
45
Postmortem
60
Notes
79
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2005)

Fernando Pessoa, 1888 - 1935 Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa was born in Lisbon. His father died when he was young and his mother married the Portuguese consul in Durban in South Africa where they lived from 1896 to 1951. During this time, Pessoa became fluent in English and was educated in Cape Town and Lisbon. Pessoa was employed as a business correspondent and also as a commercial translator. The bulk of his work was published in literary magazines, especially in his own Athena. His first book, "Antinous," appeared in 1918 and was followed by two other collection of poems, all written in English. In 1933, he published "Mensagem" his first book in Portuguese. "Livro Do Dessossogego (The Book of Disquiet)" the "factless autobiography" was written under the name of Bernardo Soares and appeared for the first time in 1982, almost fifty years after his death. After the republican revolution, in 1910, and consequent patriotic atmosphera, Pessoa created an alter ego, a heteronym, named Álvaro de Campos, supposedly a Portuguese naval engineer, born in Tavira and graduated in Glasgow. Translator Richard Zenith notes that Pessoa eventually established at least seventy-two heteronyms. According to Pessoa himself, there were three main heteronyms: Alberto Caeiro, Álvaro de Campos and Ricardo Reis. The heteronyms possess distinct biographies, temperaments, philosophies, appearances and writing styles. Pessoa died on November 30, 1935 in Lisbon. Other writings that were published posthumously and translated into several languages include "Poesias de Fernando Pessoa" (1942), Poesias de Alvaro de Campos" (1944), Poemas de Alberto Caeiro" (1946), and "Odes de Ricardo Reis" (1946).

Richard Zenith lived in Brazil and France before immigrating to Portugal in 1987. He has translated the poetry of Luis de Camoes, Fernando Pessoa, Sophia de Mello Breyner Andresen, and Joao Cabral de Melo Neto.

Bibliographic information