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Dark, melancholic, philosophical literature?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by HeavyAxe, Mar 26, 2015.

  1. HeavyAxe


    Jul 16, 2013
    Alberta, Canada
    Hey there everyone. I've sort of been down in the dumps lately. I seem to have this condition where every so often I get into this 'tortured soul' kinda persona. You know, wear a turtleneck sweater and go feed the ducks...just kidding. But for real, I do for whatever reason enjoy literature dealing with dark and melancholic themes. Philosophical topics are good as well. I'm just wondering if anyone has any recommendations for poetry or other works of literature dealing with things like death, sorrow, internal torture, nature, sadness, sorrow, occultism etc.

    Don't worry, I'm not a drag at parties. :thumbsup:
  2. 48thStreetCustom


    Nov 30, 2005
    You mean like Kafka, Edgar Allen Poe or Orwell?
    line6man likes this.
  3. sparkyfender2


    Nov 25, 2013
    Dostoevsky's "Crime and Punishment."
    One Drop likes this.
  4. "Nausea" by Jean-Paul Sartre, "Steppenwolf" by Hermann Hesse, "Big Sur" by Jack Kerouac, "The Master and Margarita" by Mikhail Bulgakov.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2015
  5. 20db pad

    20db pad

    Feb 11, 2003
    I been everywhere, man...
    None. At all.
    John Steinbeck's "The Pearl" and "Of Mice and Men" are great stories but very sobering. Kafka's "Metamorphosis" is also of the same vein.
  6. Excellent suggestion. The Idiot, by the same author, as well.
    One Drop likes this.
  7. jmverdugo


    Oct 11, 2012
    Katy TX
    Niebla (mist) by Miguel de Unamuno

    The Tunnel by Ernesto Sabato

    Perfume by Patrick Suskind
  8. One Drop

    One Drop

    Oct 10, 2004
    Swiss Alps
    Any Dostoevsky.

    In a more recent vein try JG Ballard.
  9. elgecko


    Apr 30, 2007
    Anasleim, CA
    Heart of Darkness
    bholder likes this.
  10. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Looking for a gig around East Islip, NY!

    Jan 13, 2008
    H.P Lovecraft.
  11. Tom Lane

    Tom Lane Gold Supporting Member

    Flannery O'Conner
    Muddslide likes this.
  12. William Gibson. Start with "Neuromancer".
    bholder likes this.
  13. yodedude2

    yodedude2 Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2005
    san antonio, texas
    lots of great suggestions already. i found douglas adams's 'mostly harmless' to be rather bleak. so did the author: "People have said, quite rightly, that Mostly Harmless is a very bleak book."
  14. Dale D Dilly

    Dale D Dilly Monster

    Jul 1, 2008
    Nice list. Always start with Kafka. You won't be able to get out of bed for a day after reading The Trial or The Castle.

    Let me add Faulkner to the list. No one has ever done a better job of capturing the complications and surprising turns of human ugliness.
  15. "Galapagos" by Kurt Vonnegut
  16. Funky Ghost

    Funky Ghost Translucently Groovy

    From a completely, not usually associated, genre I would submit the Chronicles of Thomas Covenant. It's hard to read at times and the main character is fairly despicable but as the story unfolds you maybe don't like him still, but you have an idea of why he thinks and acts the way he does.

    For a short story I would say look for Piers Anthony's (I know!) On the Uses of Torture. Brutal genius. It is in a collected work called Anthonology.
    Qlanq likes this.
  17. Time to watch more 3 Stooges, and to immediately view The Blues Brothers again.
  18. *ToNeS*


    Jan 12, 2001
    Sydney AU
    Death in Venice by Thomas Mann.

    I'm also big into Haruki Murakami, and some of his stuff has this really beautiful, lonely blueness to it. The novella After Dark springs to mind (and is designed, I think, to be read only after dark).
  19. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    Anything by Harlan Ellison or Gardner Dozois. You want bleak, try "Along The Scenic Route" or "I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream".

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