Milton Glaser, cover for Confessions of Zeno by Italo Svevo (Vintage, date unknown)

Scan from

Now that I’ve read that Italian writer Svevo is the ‘chronicler of the modern non-man-of-action, the fantasist, the anti-hero’ whose characters are ‘adept at pyschoanalysing themselves..not good at succeeding at what they most desire: writing’¹, and I undoubtedly relate as a fellow modern non-man-of-action, I must seek out his novel “Confessions of Zeno“, from 1923. These are in the form of memoirs kept at the insistence of the character’s psychiatrist. I just found the complete text online, but in Italian, which google doesn’t translate very convincingly – amazing that it has a go though.

Thanks for the prompter to Will of A Journey around my Skull, a blog for which I urge anyone’s immediate attention who is remotely interested in esoteric literature and hard-to-find book illustrations. Seriously amazing quantity and quality of fabulously strange 20th Century modernist inflected graphics, the range and unknownness makes me gasp. I come from a bookish family, but this man keeps producing more and more off-the-beaten-track classics. I wish I wasn’t such a grindingly slow reader.

¹Martin Seymour-Smith: Guide to Modern World Literature


About johnnynorms

I write lyrics & sing them in the Many Few, illustrated by doodle art:
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