In his latest book, the prolific writer and thinker Alphonso Lingis brings interdisciplinarity and lyrical philosophizing to the weight of reality, the weight of things, and the weight of life itself. Drawing from philosophy, anthropology, psychology, religion, and science, Lingis seeks to uncover what in our reality escapes our attempts at measuring and categorizing. Writing as much from his own experiences and those of others as from his longstanding engagement with phenomenology and existentialism, Irrevocable studies the world in which shadows, reflections, halos, and reverberations count as much as the carpentry of things.
Whether describing religious art and ritual, suffering, war and disease, the pleasures of love, the wonders of nature, archaeological findings, surfing, volcanoes, or jellyfish, Lingis writes with equal measures of rigor and abandon about the vicissitudes of our practices and beliefs. Knowing that birth, the essential encounters in our lives, crippling diseases and accidents, and even death are all determined by chance, how do we recognize and understand such chance? After facing tragedies, what makes it possible to live on while recognizing our irrevocable losses?
Lingis’s investigations are accompanied by his own vivid photographs from around the world. Balancing the local and the global, and ranging across vast expanses of culture and time, Irrevocable sounds the depths of both our passions and our impassioned bodies and minds.