Self Has No Idea Why

Self has no idea why, but there is no love, absolutely no love, in Alain de Botton’s novel The Course of Love.

It’s about the married life of a young couple. They feel this and that, followed by blocks of clinical-sounding text. Little disappointments, which otherwise would be quickly forgotten in the course of a normal life, get toted up like someone’s keeping score. In the beginning, there was a kind of heated intimacy, which is beginning to seem more and more (to self, at least) like desire rather than love.

The couple live in Edinburgh. The husband’s name is Rahib, and the wife’s name is Kirsten. He goes on a business trip:

  • Whenever he’s away, he feels as if she were trying to put an even greater distance between them than that of land or water.

Anyhoo, there is great fun in reading the clinical text. It forces her to read with detachment, as if Rahib and Kirsten were two insect specimens being examined under a microscope.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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