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The Time of the Assassins: a Study of Rimbaud

4.01 of 5 stars 4.01  ·  rating details  ·  653 ratings  ·  52 reviews
The social function of the creative personality is a recurrent theme with Henry Miller, and this book is perhaps his most poignant and concentrated analysis of the artist's dilemma.
Paperback, 160 pages
Published January 17th 1962 by New Directions Publishing Corporation (first published 1956)
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Lynne King
I read this book about twenty years ago and was reminded of it this morning by another reviewer on Goodreads.

On browsing through this now, I had forgotten how interesting this French poet was and I do believe that Henry Miller has done an admirable job here. It is worth having this book purely to read Anthony Burgess' introduction if nothing else.

I was particularly taken with Burgess' statement:

"Anyone looking in his (Miller's) essay for a detailed critical account of Rimbaud's work, or a study
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Taylor
Jun 06, 2008 Taylor rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Taylor by: Maxwell Loren Holyoke-Hirsch
I haven't read anything by either Henry Miller or Arthur Rimbaud. I know that must make me sound stupid, but it's the truth, and thought this, a study of Rimbaud by Miller, would be an interesting intro to the both of them. I wasn't expecting it to be a perfect companion to nearly all of the thought I had been working through this year, from Nietzsche to Foucault, Freud, and Kristeva, it brought everything together in a blindsiding of interpretation.

It's about Rimbaud, but more about his life as
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Anthony Bolton
ONE OF THE BOOKS OF MY LIFE .
AN ALMOST UNBEARABLY PERSONAL AND EMOTIONALLY CHALLENGING READING EXPERIENCE.
Ian Drew Forsyth
Quotes:
What we obviously lack in America, what we are not even aware we lack, is the dreamer, the inspired madperson.
As the voice of the poet becomes stifled, history loses its meaning and the eschatological promise bursts like a new and frightening dawn upon the consciousness of humanity.
It is the past which is engulfing us, not the future. The future always has and always will belong to the poet.
I believe that the dreamer, no matter how impractical they may appear to the man in the street, is
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Mike
What a profoundly strange book. It belongs equally in the general canon of Miller's work, falling under the category "fiction," as well in literary criticism, and biography. I wouldn't say that I was a big fan of Miller before this (Tropic of Cancer was just as often interesting as it was boring, exciting as it was trying), but this strange little book may have converted me quite thoroughly. Ostensibly, this is an exploration of how Rimbaud came to be Miller's favorite author, but it quickly jet ...more
John Doe
A child prodigy who gives up poetry at the height of his powers (when he is eighteen!), Rimbaud embarks on a life of adventure (selling guns, slaves and coffee). Miller identifies with Rimbaud (his life as much as his writings). I always kind of identified with Miller because I feel a connection for those without a place in the world. Rimbaud is Miller's favorite writer, and this book contains some of Miller's best writing.

For example:

"And what is the nature of this secret? I can only say that i
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Bea Kwan
I like Miller and I love Rimbaud but this whole book was basically like: "Rimbaud's did *this* in his life! Rimbaud was like this!" "Hey whoa I did *that* in my life too and I'm also like that!" slobber slobber slobber
Kurt
Nothing like a good Henry Miller rant to slide you through the Ides of March. Ok, so maybe I finished up with Time of the Assassins a couple weeks ago, but its spiritual and rebellious reverberations haven't settled down inside me yet. Ostensibly a 163 page discourse on Arthur Rimbaud, 19th century enfant terrible of French poetry and letters, it's more accurately a mirror of Miller's own poetic ideology (Read: Rant). But, hey, I knew that going in. And for me, no matter how self-absorbed, or ab ...more
Fawaz Ali
كتاب جدير بالقراءة إذ أن هنري ميللر يسبر أغوار شخصية الشاعر رامبو ويغوص في أعماق كل شاعر مرهف الأحاسيس، كما أنه يعطينا دروساً روحية في مجتمع طغى عليه الجانب المادي...

Ryoof Almutawa
هنري مييللر يعوم هنا في بحثه محاولاً دراسة آرثر رامبو الذي سرعان ما أصبح معلمه المفضل بعد أن كان لا يطيق أن ينطق احد باسمه . قراءة هذه الدراسة تجاوزت كل التوقعات! و مصدر إلهام ضخم، عندما تنتهي من هذا الكتاب تخرج بأفكار مختلفة والفضل لهما. هذا الكتاب أظهر جوانب عدة من هنري وذلك عن طريق طرحه لسيرة رامبو مستخدماً التناظرات في النقد! التي اعتبرها علامة عبقريته! لديه مهارة عالية في استخدام الكنايات واختيار الألفاظ والمقارنة، قادر أن يزرع لدى القارئ شغفاً وتوقاً لمعرفة المزيد عنهما. كتاب أجده نموذج في ...more
Nickolai
Sep 11, 2012 Nickolai rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Nickolai by: Vova
"If the poet can no longer speak for society, but only for himself, then we are at the last ditch."


I wanted to quote so many paragraphs from this outstanding Miller's analysis of Rimbaud life and work, that i thought that it will be easier to read the whole book already.
For whom the poetry is important part of human being this book is mandatory. It is the best writing about poetry I've ever read. And its a very precise representation of the pre-apocalyptic society.
I will read it again soon I'
...more
Quentin
"In Rimbaud, I see myself as in a mirror." So writes Henry Miller in his study of French symbolist poet Arthur Rimbaud. Not a clinical dissection of Rimbaud but a meditation on the plight of the creative artist in an increasingly ambivalent world.
Ioleander
أثار شهيتي لمعرفة المزيد عن رامبو ، لطالما كان لي شخصية غامضة وغير واضحة الملامح ، لكن اسلوب ميلر في هذا الكتاب قرب المسافات
وردم الفجوات وجعل من ذلك الشاب شخصاً اسطورياً جاذباً .. أحببت الكتاب و انصح به ..
Faisal AlHebainy
لو كنت من هنري ميللر، لخجلت كثيرًا من نشر هذا الكتاب. رامبو من أقرب الشعراء إلى قلبي، مع بليك ودانتي، إلا أن كتاب ميللر لم يعجبني أبدًا. وعمومًا، يُقرفني كثيرًا تقديس الإنسان لإنسانٍ آخر.
Amna  AlShyookh
لا أحد احد بصراً وأصدق هدفاً من الفتى ذهبي الشعر ذي السابعة عشرة والعينين الزرقاوين زرقة زهرة العناقية.

هنري ميللر*

حين تقرأ/ تترجم/ تكتب رامبو يجب أن تحبه، وميللر يعبده! حتى جاء الكتاب مشحوناً بالعاطفة والحب. ربما من أجمل ما كتب عن رامبو رغم كثرة وزخم ما كتب عنه.
هنري لم يأخذ ارتور باتجاه التحليل السقيم والمكرر عن صمته الشعري ومحاولة تفسير صمته وحياته البوهيمية الغامضة. النصف الآخر من حياته تحديداً. رآه كما هو وأحبه كما هو بل وجد حقيقته ومرآته فيه. لم يحاكمه أو يحاسبه.
دروس ميللر ودراسته لمجتمعنا ا
...more
أحمد شاكر
رامبو وزمن القتلة
لـ هنري ميللر
أدب/ نقد/ سيرة ذاتية
ترجمة: سعدي يوسف
منشورات الجمل
الطبعة الأولي 2012

آرثر رامبو (1854- 1891). ولد في شارلفيل شمال شرق فرنسا. بدأ كتابة الشعر وهو في السادسة عشر.أثرت أعماله علي الفن السريالي. ارتبط بعلاقة مثلية مع بول فرلين الشاعر الفرنسي (1844- 1896). كتب (الاشراقات) بين عامي 1872 و 1874، وهي قصائد نثرية حاول فيها عدم التمييز بين الواقع والهلوسة. وفي عام 1873 كتب (فصل في الجحيم) وهو آخر أعماله الشعرية. وكان عمره تسعة عشر عاما.
في يوليو 1873 أطلق بول فرلين رصاصتين علي ر
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Dan
Miller writes compellingly, passionately, sometimes hyperbolically, about French poet Arthur Rimbaud, enfant terrible and author of works like A Season in Hell & Other Poems and Illuminations. In this text, Miller employs a non-academic approach, reflected in the level of generality with which he discusses the poet: there are very few lines quoted from Rimbaud's poems, and much of the discussion is imaginative reconstruction of significant times from Rimbaud's biography. The essay is a medit ...more
Eduardo Sangarcía
Uno de los más apasionantes estudios sobre la figura de Rimbaud con el que me he topado hasta ahora. Miller no intenta explicar el genio y el actuar del joven poeta porque lo comprende a fondo; entiende su hastío, su ira hacia Occidente, su odio hacia la madre y el orden porque lo comparte. Comprende incluso el pasaje que más desconcierto ha causado en todos los lectores y estudiosos de Rimbaud: su abandono de la poesía. Lo entiende y delicita a Arthur por tener las agallas suficientes para hace ...more
Folkert Wierda
Sometimes you need to get out of your comfort zone, and with this I did, big time. It was recommended to by by a friend, and so I put it on my Amazon wish list, after which a far-away and never-met Facebook friend got it for me as a birthday present.

First of all: I am quite an analytical person, and never have seen anything in poetry. Also I do not listen to texts from songs, I listen to the music. So maybe I lack the background and experience to appreciate books like this work by Miller. But he
...more
Jeremy
What to say? Part of me wants very dearly to give this book one star. About fifty pages in, I found myself somewhat angrily thinking "Henry Miller, what's wrong with you? Don't you see that your self-absorption is holding you back? Don't you see how deeply you misread Rimbaud, how really you are using bits and pieces of Rimbaud to interpret yourself? How you are simply rambling on about yourself, again? "

But on the other hands, flashes of insight, vertiginous and brave. Even a moment or two of i
...more
Joe Dwyer
In my opinion this is one of the greatest biographies ever written. Henry Miller captures the essence of Rimbaud better than any work/homage I have read.

“He will never be satisfied,” writes one biographer...I know because I suffer from the same disease...I don't believe for a minute that the flowers ever faded or the stars were ever dimmed in Rimbaud's eyes...It was the world of men that his weary glance saw things pale and fade. He began by wanting to “see all, feel all, exhaust everything, ex
...more
Jacob
All poets and artists should read this book.
Jon Reeve
This book is less of a critical work about Rimbaud and more of a just regular Henry Miller book. Miller rants, raves, goes off on biographical (and autobiographical) tangents, and talks about his personal experiences reading Rimbaud. He writes ecstatically, as usual, and in so doing writes a fitting study of the guy. Other books about Rimbaud will certainly be more informative, and more scholarly, and more in-depth, but this book, despite its shortcomings in those areas, certainly wins the pri ...more
Lubna ALajarmah
نصرف حيواتنا بحثاً عن الأمان والطمأنينة، ونضحي بتواتر السعادة والشقاء ومكتسباتهما لأجل مستقبل غامض نحتمي بجدران أوهامه من صخب الآن وهديره، فلماذا لا نركن إلى الثقة وهدوء الانسياب في بحر الوجود... قلق النفوس الميتة ذاك هو ما يتقصى مكامنه الكاتب الأميركي هنري ميللر في كتابه "رامبو وزمن القتلة". ميللر باعتباره "رجل الأجواء المفتوحة"، يبحر في سيرة معلمه الشاعر الفرنسي "آرثر رامبو" بحثا عن ماهية الفن: الرؤية، التألق، الشجاعة، والإيمان، ليستقطر منها عبق الحرية الصرفة.
clarenina
Not quite sure how I felt about this. There were moments of real beauty that completely drew me in, and there were others in which I become frustrated by Miller's fanboy hyperbole. I think this would be great to re-read once I've read more of Rimbaud's work, at least then I may understand Miller's sentiment a little more. I do love how Miller writes however, and the book is a nice little addition to any fan's library.
Ryan
there definitely is a "boyish hero worship evident" in this one (as my friend Nicole put it) but that is perfect for someone like myself who is prone to that sort of thing. i was an easy sell considering the fact that I am in the latter stages of a cliched Rimbaud phase and that I had just recently read Tropic of Cancer. It was a double whammy. you know these guys. ice cream is something. you can eat it if you want.
Adriaan Krabbendam
Quite stupid, actually. Though I like the author and much of his writing, this supposed to be "study" of the poet Rimbaud is mainly about the writer Miller, his obsessions, his discomforts, etc. If you dismiss all this, it is again a good Miller-read, for al the wittiness, the good lines, the conceitednes... But for Rimbaud we have to look for other sources.
Levi
it doesn't necessarily deserve more than the 3 stars i have given it, nevertheless there is something extremely compelling about Miller's prose. his analysis of Rimbaud
progresses by a comparison of the parallels with his own life- so you learn more about Miller than anything else. But i suppose you'd all expect this since it's Miller!
Stefan
Jan 13, 2011 Stefan added it
Not completely sure what I think of this. At times Miller's overly ecstatic and it's a turnoff, but it is an interesting look into an enigmatic artist read by another artist. He theorizes about what may Rimbaud may have been leading towards had he not died. Not very long, I should just finish it.
Bryce Digdug
An amazing essay about Rimbaud's giving up art and how, in general, people have given up on life and are the living dead. I would say especially under G.W. Bush! In general, about how society is crushing to individuality and what potential we have to create a society beyond our dreams.
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147
Henry Miller sought to reestablish the freedom to live without the conventional restraints of civilization. His books are potpourris of sexual description, quasi-philosophical speculation, reflection on literature and society, surrealistic imaginings, and autobiographical incident.

After living in Paris in the 1930s, he returned to the United States and settled in Big Sur, Calif. Miller's first tw
...more
More about Henry Miller...
Tropic of Cancer Tropic of Capricorn Sexus (The Rosy Crucifixion, #1) Black Spring Plexus (The Rosy Crucifixion, #2)

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“Conditioned to ecstasy, the poet is like a gorgeous unknown bird mired in the ashes of thought. If he succeeds in freeing himself, it is to make a sacrificial flight to the sun. His dreams of a regenerate world are but the reverberations of his own fevered pulse beats. He imagines the world will follow him, but in the blue he finds himself alone. Alone but surrounded by his creations; sustained, therefore, to meet the supreme sacrifice. The impossible has been achieved; the duologue of author with Author is consummated. And now forever through the ages the song expands, warming all hearts, penetrating all minds. At the periphery the world is dying away; at the center it glows like a live coal. In the great solar heart of the universe the golden birds are gathered in unison. There it is forever dawn, forever peace, harmony and communion. Man does not look to the sun in vain; he demands light and warmth not for the corpse which he will one day discard but for his inner being. His greatest desire is to burn with ecstasy, to commerge his little flame with the central fire of the universe. If he accords the angels wings so that they may come to him with messages of peace, harmony and radiance from worlds beyond, it is only to nourish his own dreams of flight, to sustain his own belief that he will one day reach beyond himself, and on wings of gold. One creation matches another; in essence they are all alike. The brotherhood of man consists not in thinking alike, nor in acting alike, but in aspiring to praise creation. The song of creation springs from the ruins of earthly endeavor. The outer man dies away in order to reveal the golden bird which is winging its way toward divinity.” 73 likes
“He saw that science had become as great a hoax as religion, that nationalism was a farce, patriotism a fraud, education a form of leprosy, and that morals were for cannibals” 16 likes
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