How to Read and Why Themes

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Reality is a significant character in Harold Bloom's "How to Read and Why". Principally, reality means death and limitation. The inevitable process of dying—and of losing love, losing oneself and one's lovers—spurs the creativity of all of the writers Bloom talks about. They each feel the desire to give reality its due and at the same time to find a transcendent solution to the panic it raises in them. Consciousness being incompatible with death, it is impossible to know death first-hand, only to prepare for it, approximate it, or know it symbolically, and the writers whose works Bloom describes all give death a presence if not a voice in their works, and then counterbalance that voice, or character, with other voices or characters who create value and dignity, even if they do not, themselves survive dying.

One of the other forms of reality is...

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This section contains 780 words
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