Book Review – Nausea

Posted: May 14, 2014 in Book Reviews
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You don’t know what Antoine Roquentin really experiences when he says he’s having nausea and he doesn’t exist. The existence here is more inclined towards the term existentialism. He tries to break down every possible situation with a series of thoughts and take worse out of it. There is nothing called as living for him. So living rather than existing doesn’t have any meaning to him. For him existing his the highest form of being alive. Rest are mere objects which are objectified by further more mere beings.


Antoine Roquentin is a thirty year old man who’s leaving France in few days. In a book where no description of human beings were given and mostly delves around metaphysical elements this info that he’s 30 years old sits in our mind. It’s quite obvious that he wants us to know that he’s 30 years old. That’s the only certain part we know about Antoine. Rest are the things that he describes how the world is.

He gets into lots of thoughts that runs constantly in his mind. That’s how he sees the world. But the way it’s written he doesn’t come across as a weirdo. The way he describes about the people when he talks to autodidact is awesome. The spider jumping from the hand, eyes popping out of the skull. All these things are thoughts of a human who is not fond of existence. A severely annoyed man would see things that way. This is when responsibility helps. When you are responsible individual your thought process works in stem with the other responsible people in the group. So you see the world the way others see. This is normalcy. Just when you are not worried about your death, about the life that you’re actually living you start seeing things. Start imagining things. The probability of events that could happen for the situations at those junctures.

There are a lot of psychological elements. A complete understanding which I didn’t get. But psychology interests me. It puts into scope of something that could be seen only by few people. It’s imaginative but not like electrons and neutrons. When we were taught that electrons revolve around nucleus and earth revolves around the sun. There isn’t much difference the way I thought. When I’m to think of what people would have thought for the situation. The study makes interesting.

Antoine Roquentin and Sartre are one and the same. The style of the book is very appealing. Constantly interchanging between reality and fiction. All through Antoine wants to write a book which is as hard as steel but is this the book he’s really talking about that he wants to be written. If that’s the case it’s a true present tense book. He doesn’t want his book to be a thing of past. And he very well knows that he whatever written is a thing of the past. He mentions these things as a cue to us.

The intellectualism he presents through Antoine is awesome. The autodidact too comes across as an individual who is very knowledgeable but it actually is a mockery. We could clearly differentiate between the autodidact’s intellectualism and his. When he irritates him and meets him during climax he knows that the autodidact won’t like him and he reacts in the same way too. This is where we could differentiate the intellectualism of the two guys. Even though all the knowledge that the autodidact has got through is through books he still couldn’t come to the present terms. The autodidact knows that Antoine is an intelligent man but once he’s angered he loses the opinion whereas Antoine knows that the autodidact is not existential like him but still understands why he’s considered intelligent by people.

I say Satre and Antoine are same because what individual would reject Nobel prize saying it’s all bourgeoisie fallacy.

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