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A Journey Round My Room

A Journey Round My Room

by Xavier de Maistre

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Under House-arrest

In 1790, Xavier de Maistre was 27 years old, and a soldier in the army of the Sardinian Kingdom, which covered swathes of modern-day Northern Italy and Southern France.

An impetuous young soldier, he was placed under house-arrest in Turin for fighting an illegal duel; ther...

Inspired by the works of Laurence Sterne, with their digressive and colloquial style, de Maistre decided to make the most of his sentence by recording an exploration of the room as a travel journal. Like a modern teenager cataloguing their daily routine in a series of finely-tune...

It parodies the travel journals of the eighteenth-century (such as A Voyage Around the World by Louis de Bougainville, 1771), and could be read today as an early take on the modern vogue for "psychogeography" — each tiny thing that he encounters sends de Maistre into rhapsodies, and mundane journ...

De Maistre reportedly did not think much of the work, but his elder brother Joseph, the renowned philosopher and counter-revolutionary, was so impressed with what he read that he arranged for it to be published, much to his younger brother's surprise. By the time of its publication in 1794 Xavier...

He went on to join the Russian army, and moved to Saint Petersburg, where he wrote a sequel, Night Voyage Around my Room. It was clearly a difficult follow-up: he began writing it in 1799, but didn’t finish it for another twenty-five years. The edition featured here is an 1871 translation into En...

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helps me quanitfy my 21 grams of life :) hope it helps if you are reading, let me know in the comments.

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