The Book of Questions: Volume 1 (The Book of Questions, The Book of Yukel, Return to the Book)
Author: Edmond Jabès
Translator: Rosmarie Waldrop
Publisher: Wesleyan University Press (1991)
The Book of Questions is a meditative narrative of Jewish Experience, and, more generally, man's relation to the world. In these volumes the word is personified in the woman Yaël, silence in her still-born child Elya. Even though words imply ambiguity and lies, they are the home of the exile. A book becomes the Book, fragments of the law that are in some way unified, where past and present, the visionary, and the common place, encounter each other. For Jabès every word is a question in the book of being. Man defines himself in the world against all that threatens his existence—death, the infinite, silence, that is, God, his primal opponent. How can one speak what cannot be spoken?