It is Too Late For Man

William Ospina


Paul Valéry wrote that the two dangers facing society are order and disorder. This text focuses on the order and disorder of contemporary society. It is governed by an idea; that the reign of man might be coming to an end. Civilization founded upon human supremacy, the idea of the superiority of our species, should cede to a more respectful order that is kinder to other creatures. It also seeks to show that man will only find the right path towards his own survival if he renounces his throne of arrogance and humbly submits to the powers that actually govern life and sustain the universe. Perhaps it is the terrible power of science, the overwhelming influence of technology, and man's growing and indiscriminate hostility towards man, which we call the military industry and terrorism, which make clear that man's claim to supremacy is completely unjustified and that paths must be found to transcend this naive arrogance. Given that we must now save something much greater, it has become too late for man. These words of introduction from Ospina are an extremely clear summary of the themes he deals with in the six essays published here for the first time in Spain. This is one of the poet, novelist and essayist's essential books. What is now left for man at the turn of the millennium other than the attempt to recover genuine meaning in the sacred and the beautiful? What is the meaning of disease, death, nature, and free time if they lack the depth of the mythical gaze? Is it, as William Ospina freely suggests in these six essays, too late for man?


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