Essayist Brooks finds character emerges from life’s stumbles – providencejournal.com – Providence, RI

My favorite cameo is Brooks’ high regard for writer and philosopher Michel de Montaigne (1533-92). A figure of considerable ability, the Frenchman, says Brooks, “would use his essays to arrive at himself.” It is said that Montaigne was not only an agile thinker but a thoroughly amiable human being.”Most of the time his own deficiencies just made him smile,” writes the author. At the same time, says Brooks, he tended his life as though it were a flourishing, pleasurable garden.”Montaigne,” Brooks writes, “understood how original his project was: completely honest self-revelation and through that, a vision of the moral life. He understood he was trying to create a new method of character formation and implying a new type of hero, a hero of ruthlessly honest but sympathetic self-understanding.”

Barbara Hall: Essayist Brooks finds character emerges from life’s stumbles – Entertainmentlife – providencejournal.com – Providence, RI

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