The Human Drift, The Jacket (Star-Rover) & The Kempton-Wace Letters - pr_1737829

The Human Drift, The Jacket (Star-Rover) & The Kempton-Wace Letters

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The Star Rover is a novel by American writer Jack London published in 1915 (published in the United Kingdom as The Jacket). It is science fiction, and involves both mysticism and reincarnation. A framing story is told in the first person by Darrell Standing, a university professor serving life imprisonment in San Quentin State Prison for murder. Prison officials try to break his spirit by means of a torture device called "the jacket," a canvas jacket which can be tightly laced so as to compress the whole body, inducing angina. Standing discovers how to withstand the torture by entering a kind of trance state, in which he walks among the stars and experiences portions of past lives. I trod interstellar space, exalted by the knowledge that I was bound on vast adventure, where, at the end, I would find all the cosmic formulae and have made clear to me the ultimate secret of the universe. In my hand I carried a long glass wand. It was borne in upon me that with the tip of this wand I must touch each star in passing. And I knew, in all absoluteness, that did I but miss one star I should be precipitated into some unplummeted abyss of unthinkable and eternal punishment and guilt. The novel presents a discussion of the philosophy of love and sex, written in the form of a series of letters between two men, "Herbert Wace," a young scientist, and "Dane Kempton," an elderly poet. Writer Jack London wrote "Wace's" letters, and Anna Strunsky wrote "Kempton's." In the late 19th century, the authors were part of a San Francisco radical literary group known as "The Crowd." Kempton makes the case for feeling and emotion, while Wace proceeds "scientifically" and analyzes love in Darwinian terms: "I purpose to order my affairs in a rational manner....Wherefore I marry Hester Stebbins. I am not impelled by the archaic sex madness of the beast, nor by the obsolescent romance madness of later-day man. I contract a tie which reason tells me is based upon health and sanity and compatibility. My intellect shall delight in that tie." Initially the public was piqued by the anonymity of the writers and the book was moderately successful. London biographer Russ Kingman praised the book; he quoted the Buffalo Commercial as admiring the "sheer charm of its prose" and saying the book "holds firmly its place in the front rank of the best of the season's publications."

Product code: 9789353858391

ISBN 9789353858391
Publisher Prince Classics
Dimensions (HxWxD in mm) H216xW140xS35
No. Of Pages 554
Series Prince Classics
A framing story is told in the first person by Darrell Standing, a university professor serving life imprisonment in San Quentin State Prison for murder. Prison officials try to break his spirit by means of a torture device called "the jacket," a canvas jacket which can be tightly laced so as to compress the whole body, inducing angina.