Writing is closer to thinking than to speaking.Paul Auster describes the French writer Joseph Joubert (1754–1824) as “a man of letters without portfolio,” “a writer who spent his whole life preparing himself for a work that ever came to be written, a writer of the highest rank who paradoxically never produced a book.” Joubert wrote, for forty years, in notebooks — aphorisms, observations, phrases. His work will be of interest to any reader who values the fragmentary, the provisional, the unfinished.
The Notebooks of Joseph Joubert: A Selection, trans. Paul Auster (New York: New York Review Books, 2005).
On my bookshelf, this book will go next to the NYRB edition of Georg Christoph Lichtenberg’s The Waste Books .