The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows Pdf is a nonfiction Poetry Book By John Koenig. A truly original book in every sense of the word, The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows poetically defines emotions that we all feel but don’t have the words to express—until now. The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows is for anyone who enjoys a shift in perspective, pondering the ineffable feelings that make up our lives. With a gorgeous package and beautiful illustrations throughout, this is the perfect gift for creatives, word nerds, and human beings everywhere.
The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows Summary
Have you ever wondered about the lives of each person you pass on the street, realizing that everyone is the main character in their own story, each living a life as vivid and complex as your own? That feeling has a name: “sonder.” Or maybe you’ve watched a thunderstorm roll in and felt a primal hunger for disaster, hoping it would shake up your life. That’s called “lachesism.” Or you were looking through old photos and felt a pang of nostalgia for a time you’ve never actually experienced. That’s “anemoia.”
If you’ve never heard of these terms before, that’s because they didn’t exist until John Koenig set out to fill the gaps in our language of emotion. The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows “creates beautiful new words that we need but do not yet have,” says John Green, bestselling author of The Fault in Our Stars. By turns poignant, relatable, and mind-bending, the definitions include whimsical etymologies drawn from languages around the world, interspersed with otherworldly collages and lyrical essays that explore forgotten corners of the human condition—from “astrophe,” the longing to explore beyond the planet Earth, to “zenosyne,” the sense that time keeps getting faster.
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About John Koenig Author of The Dictionary Of Obscure Sorrows Pdf Book
John Koenig Author of The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows Pdf is a video maker, voice actor, graphic designer, and writer. Born in Idaho and raised in Geneva, Switzerland, he created The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows in 2009, first as a blog at DictionaryofObscureSorrows.com before expanding the project to YouTube. He lives in Minneapolis with his wife and daughter.
The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows pdf, Paperback, Hardcover Book Information
- Publisher : Simon & Schuster (November 16, 2021)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 288 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1501153641
- ISBN-13 : 978-1501153648
- Item Weight : 11 ounces
- Dimensions : 5 x 0.9 x 7 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #3,285 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #1 in Lexicography
- #3 in Word Lists
- #24 in Emotional Mental Health
- Customer Reviews: 4.8 out of 5 stars 1,673 ratings
The Dictonary Of Obscure Sorrows Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Cute
Reviewed in the United States on August 25, 2022
How to describe the ineffable, liminal feelings that not only exist between more commonly understood ones, but that sometimes combine supposedly contradictory emotions? Those “happy-sad” feelings, for instance, that are present in the sublime harmonies of the Beach Boys Pet Sounds?
Author John Koenig’s answer is to first struggle to locate these feelings—usually with anecdotes about his own experiences or those of his correspondents via his website. Then, he takes existing words and creates his own compounds, portmanteau, and neologisms. In short, he doesn’t quite pull them out of his fundament, but many times it feels like he does. Many times, in fact, The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows feels basically like a dolled up, college-educated version of Jeff Foxworthy’s old act, minus the phonetical aspect and the white cue cards.
It doesn’t help that his understanding of language lags well behind his appreciation of it, and his own sense of his facility with it. Contra his assertion, perception does not always precede language, and there are many instances of people being unable to perceive things exactly because they lacked the vocabulary to describe or categorize, and thus apprehend what was before their eyes. The “Kaspar Hauser Protokoll,” and the tales of other foundlings and feral children have proven as much. As have early accounts of contacts between remote, isolated peoples living in pretechnological states of nature who had trouble literally seeing some of the impedimenta of explorers and conquistadors. In other words, if your language doesn’t contain a word for “ship,” it’s possible that you might not just “ken” periphrastically (using multiple words to describe that for which your language lacks a word, i.e. “firewater.”) You might literally be unable to see that which is before your eyes simply because you lack a linguistic context for it.
That words can constrain and hinder as much as expand or compliment is undoubtedly true, as Koenig suggests in his book’s afterward. But their coinage and circulation is not arbitrary no matter how much he wants it to be (i.e. onomatopoeia is founded on sound, not whim), or how much he insists on being the one to do the arbitrary coining.
Ultimately, in plain speech, I found the book a little too cute, cloying, even off-putting. Tonally I was expecting something a little more rigorous, less whimsical. Others, I think, will more readily succumb to its enchantments, but I don’t think even they will ever find themselves using Koenig’s newly minted words in their daily conversations.
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun, fascinating and thought provoking
Reviewed in the United States on August 25, 2022
My boyfriend and I read from OS (Obscure Sorrows) every night just before bed as a way to come together from our busy day. The book is intelligent, intriguing, thought-provoking, funny and breaks us from the linear/procedural mindset our lives demand. OS, as we call it, validates feelings and thoughts not supported in our language. I only speak two languages, my boyfriend speaks five, and we both incorporate the words of OS into our daily life…like a secret language.
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully Poetic Book
Reviewed in the United States on July 23, 2022
Mr. Koenig has a lyrical, flowing, creative writing style that takes the reader on a journey. His definitions are poignant and lovely for many of the words he includes in this small, thoughtful book. This is not just a dictionary. He gives the reader something to ponder, to reflect upon with each new word. This book could even be used as a sort of meditative journal. Open it to almost any page and you will find a word and its definition, that you can apply to your life in some way, or at the very least, a word and its definition that is evocative and melancholic (in an alluring way) enough that you want to linger in it, taking the time to consider the effect of its meaning on you. It would be a great gift for any writer.
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