Losing One’s Mind

Jackson Williams.


Can one give too much of oneself into a work to the extent of losing one’s mind and become mad?

If so, Montaigne seems to think it a waste, to destroy oneself in such a way. Torquato Tasso, the Italian poet, who produced “Gerusalemme liberata(The Liberation of Jerusalem)”, had lost his mind and was confined to a madhouse. The exhausting literary industry strained his health, and the poet presumably suffered from something that appears to be schizophrenia.

To quote Richard Holmes, “To find your subject, you must in some sense lose yourself along the way.” 

In that case, Tasso more than found his subject.

Or what about Douglas Day, Malcolm Lowry biographer who, later, ended his own life in the same way(a suicide) as his subject Mr. Lowry has done?

I spent quite some time discovering some bits about Liberation of Jerusalem by Torquato Tasso today. This English version…

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