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Signposts to Elsewhere
 
 

Signposts to Elsewhere [Kindle Edition]

Yahia Lababidi
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

Kindle Price: £6.41 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Product Description

Product Description

In homage to a tradition advanced by philosophers and pundits from Confucius to Oscar Wilde to Dr. Seuss, Jane Street Press is pleased to release the electronic version of Signposts to Elsewhere: a book of aphorisms & other tailored thoughts, by Egyptian-Lebanese author Yahia Lababidi. Aphorisms, by the author’s own definition, are ‘complete fragments.’ Witty, resonant, and precise, they capture the contradictory nature of human truths and sentiments, reflecting ‘the soul’s dialogue with itself.’


Signposts to Elsewhere is sorbet sharp, always leaving the palate clean for another, and another…

Mark Simpson, The Independent (UK) ‘Books of the Year,’ 2008


Signposts to Elsewhere is a succulent, stunning collection of images and thoughts more well-lit than the old swinging torches of the lamplighters. I find myself pausing everywhere among these wisdoms, wondering why the world stumbles and staggers through such a dark and greedy time when there are people alive with such keen, caring insight. This is a book to live with for the long run, to return to again and again, as one returns to a favorite corner for reading and thinking. If Yahia Samir Lababidi were in charge of a country, I would want to live there.

Naomi Shihab Nye

Wisdom for Lababidi is on the move, a matter of suppleness rather than rigor, of insights and angles rather than rules... As intense as his conversation with himself is, it is also kind, tolerant of his own limits and of ours… I give you that expert self-listener, that excellent writer, Yahia Lababidi.
James Richardson (from the Foreword)
Lababidi knows that fables and metaphors overcome resistance more readily than facts and position papers. His half smile becomes our own, changing our self-estimate, and then—who knows?—the choices we make as well.

Alfred Corn

Yahia Lababidi's aphorisms are elegant, thoughtful and wise, written proof that the art of the aphorism is still very much alive.

James Geary, author of Geary’s Guide to the World’s Great Aphorists

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 62 KB
  • Print Length: 149 pages
  • Publisher: Jane Street Press (29 Dec 2007)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00427ZJC6
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,037,601 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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5.0 out of 5 stars Revival of a lost art 5 April 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Yahia Lababidi is not *quite* the only aphorist working today, but he has certanly raised the profile of this neglected art. This book was rated one of the Books of the Year by the Independent back in 2008, and it may come to be seen as the first publication of a distinguished literary career. The author, Egyptian-Lebanese by birth but living and working in Washington, has already been on the jury of the celebrated Neustadt prize and is extremely active in online publication, featuring in poetry reviews, magazines, interviews and contributing thoughtful essays on various subjects.

The aphorisms collected here are the result of many years of thinking and dreaming; the author himself confesses he is not always certain of their meaning, and they provide ample demonstration of how the same mind can contain multitudes and readily contradict itself, sometimes in the same sentence. But there is also a sense of serenity here, a wisdom hard-won and lightly applied with an almost Taoist playfulness. A short book, to be sure, but its phrases will resonate and be remembered, and the art of aphorism, dying on the vine since Nietzsche, bursts back into full fruit, suddenly seeming utterly contemporary (many of these would make excellent tweets). Yahia Lababidi is definitely a writer to watch.
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Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Quick, Fresh, Vital 12 April 2007
By Daniel K. Blue - Published on Amazon.com
Short and resonant, aphorisms take just a second to read and are ideally suited to the pace of our times. Yahia Lababidi has revived this form, and his book, Signposts to Elsewhere, teems with observations which seem as fresh and unexpected as a good haiku. Many of his epigrams are humorous: "To be overeducated is to be overfed and undernourished." Others call up memories: "When we were young, our blood sufficed as stimulant." All are alive and enlivening. Labidibi has grouped his sayings thematically, and each set is accompanied by a clever drawing by Ghada Alkhandari. Personally, I prefer to open them at random. When I'm bored or tired, a comment like "Opposites attract, similarities last" can wake me for the rest of the day.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Signposts 4 April 2007
By Sherief Elkatsha - Published on Amazon.com
A wonderful gift.

Small truths, neatly bound.

Timeless
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Revival of a lost art 6 April 2012
By T. Pieraccini - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
Yahia Lababidi is not *quite* the only aphorist working today, but he has certanly raised the profile of this neglected art. This book was rated one of the Books of the Year by the Independent back in 2008, and it may come to be seen as the first publication of a distinguished literary career. The author, Egyptian-Lebanese by birth but living and working in Washington, has already been on the jury of the celebrated Neustadt prize and is extremely active in online publication, featuring in poetry reviews, magazines, interviews and contributing thoughtful essays on various subjects.

The aphorisms collected here are the result of many years of thinking and dreaming; the author himself confesses he is not always certain of their meaning, and they provide ample demonstration of how the same mind can contain multitudes and readily contradict itself, sometimes in the same sentence. But there is also a sense of serenity here, a wisdom hard-won and lightly applied with an almost Taoist playfulness. A short book, to be sure, but its phrases will resonate and be remembered, and the art of aphorism, dying on the vine since Nietzsche, bursts back into full fruit, suddenly seeming utterly contemporary (many of these would make excellent tweets). Yahia Lababidi is definitely a writer to watch.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Like water, one finds themselves returning often to this source of mental water 7 Aug 2011
By DR Fredrickson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have read, re-read, at least a dozen times, "Signposts to Elsewhere" and my book is still in remarkably good condition as I treasure it and the author's intellect to stimulate the reader's mind with such simple words at times and others with a bit more depth to the actual meaning. If you read Yahia's interview with Alex Stein you are privileged to learn how the author came to be so communicative in his own unique way as his origins started with his grandmother's who spoke and taught him with saying's that would eventually awaken him to notice Kafka and Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche! (and who is to say that Nietzsche losing his father- the little German town's Lutheran Minister at age 5 and Nietzsche being named after the Prussian King who appointed his father- and the Prussian King and Nietzsche both shared the same birthday, thus 'Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche' and then 6 month's later, to suffer the loss of his younger brother, the relocations that followed, such early trauma in a young life- were not the foundational bricks that one day Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche would stand upon!) And Yahia Lababidi was deeply affected by Nietzsche as he reveals in his interview with Alex Stein. "Signposts to Elsewhere" is a rare treasure that you find yourself constantly opening and enjoying. And for myself, it has been 3 years of rarely a day missing one/two/three/four/five or more of Yahia's thoughts. Every so often we are given a gift to the world, in this case, Yahia's path in life, with Nietzsche as a domino, just as Kafka was, and his grandmother's, to the writing and publishing of "Signposts to Elsewhere", a gift to each of us from Yahia who treasures great thoughts and the genuineness of each of his observations, some phrased in such a way as to make you read it over and over and like Lay's Potato Chip's, you just cannot stop at one! Which is how I have read this book so many times and will continue to do so as like water, it is soothing to the mind. Enjoy! Treasure it! Constantly come back to it- you can never read just one thought, your mind is thirsty and you will always read 'just one more'! And enjoy Yahia Lababidi's latest gifts/works as Yahia is 'the gift' and what he chooses to share with us is a 'gift' from him. My best to all who revel in the endless waters of great minds.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Personal Experience as a Springboard for Valuable Universal Insights 16 Aug 2010
By Rifkah Goldberg - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Yahia Lababidi, born in Egypt in 1973, worked as an editor for UNESCO's Cairo office for almost a decade. Now a freelance writer based in the United States, he is the only contemporary author of Arab origin included in "Geary's Guide to the World's Great Aphorists" (Bloomsbury, 2007), the authoritative book on this long-standing literary genre.
In his randomly-arranged eclectic aphorism collection, "Signposts to Elsewhere," published by Jane Street Press (New York) in 2008, Lababidi uses his personal experience as a springboard for valuable universal insights.
At the most personal level, the author considers love and close relationships: "At the root of all unhappiness is a crisis of Love"; "The notion of family is a comforting fallacy". "In truth, there are only relative strangers"; "The need for public adulation is commonly overcompensation for lack of intimacy".
What he has learnt about human nature is another major topic: "The regrettable thing about insecurity is how dearly everyone else must pay for it"; "We are born with one umbilical cord but die with many"; "Neither instinct nor intellect is to be trusted alone"; "The thoughts we choose to act upon define us to others, the ones we do not, define us to ourselves"; "There is only one way to live against one's nature: unhappily"; "The overexamined life is no more worth living than the unexamined"; "History does not repeat itself, human nature does".
Attempting to understand the enigma of creativity, he comes up with: "The personal made universal is art's truth"; "Only by becoming a slave to art might the artist hope to master life"; "The primary challenge for creators is surviving themselves".
In his aphorisms on "life", the author tries to bring it all together:"Life: a midway point between two unknowns"; "With enigmatic clarity, life gives us a different answer each time we ask her the same question".
With his aphorism, "Hope: the refusal to accept things as they are," Lababidi echoes the title of his book. Despite the difficult and often conflicting lessons he has learned in life, he still manages to harbor the dream that it might still be possible to reach "elsewhere". This book provides carefully expressed thoughts with which we can all sympathize.
He has recently published "Trial by Ink: From Nietzsche to Belly-Dancing", a collection of 21 essays (also available from Amazon), which I very much look forward to reading.
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