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49 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dasein: A Thrown Projection, 28 Feb. 2010
This review is from: Mr. Bounce (Mr. Men Classic Library) (Paperback)
An infant's primer in Existentialism, we find in this book a weighty treatise on the personal politics of agency and empowerment, taking ownership and authorship of one's own life.

Such is the force with which this Heideggerian hero is hurled into the world that he has not stopped bouncing since. This is Mr Bounce's facticity - the set of circumstances, both of himself and his environment, in which he finds himself as a subjectivity. That is, his ceaseless bouncing is the hand that life has dealt him, owing to his unique position in time, in history, as a conscious being in a sensory world.

The phrase above is the key to this tale - 'he finds himself as a subjectivity'. In the early stages of the story, his experience is more that of an object as he randomly bounces his way through his life, exerting next to no control. It is important to be aware, as ever with Hargreaves, that this is not merely a matter of the physical, the material. The most crucial passage of this masterwork is where Mr Bounce is beaten around like a tennis ball by two players who appear to lack any concept of his personhood. This is just as we are all to some extent shunted to and fro by the whims and vagaries of das Man, The They - the unthinking, amorphous collective abnegation of Will. Here we confront Bad Faith - inauthentic existence.

Unlike many though, perhaps due to his particularly vivid and immediate experience of this phenomenon, Mr Bounce is spurred into action. In a visit to a doctor (of philosophy?), Mr Bounce is presented with the perfect solution - a pair of heavy boots.

Acknowledging his facticity he also transcends it, through choice - the active exercise of free will. Newly grounded in the uniqueness of his being, his bouncing ceases - the emancipatory conclusion of this work is the achievement of agency, authentic being.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 9 Mar 2011 11:17:53 GMT
Hamilton, all your Mr Men reviews are works of genius. Please do more!

Posted on 3 Jun 2014 14:33:14 BDT
You rule. Please could you do one about Mr Nonsense?

In reply to an earlier post on 1 Dec 2014 22:18:21 GMT
I am Mr Richardson's agent. I have to inform you that, regrettably, he only works in short spurts. The Mr Men spurt lasted two days (28 February to 1 March 2010). We are all of us eagerly awaiting the next spurt, when Venus is aligned with Mars.

Posted on 4 Mar 2016 11:32:02 GMT
M. Osten-tan says:
AMAZING REVIEW!! You've made my day
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