On Location in the Loire Valley Essay

Diane Ackerman
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In the following review, Taylor discusses Ackerman's treatment of death and life in her collection I Praise My Destroyer.

I Praise My Destroyer faces up to death. As the title implies, plunging into the multivarious sensations of the quotidian is ultimately self-deceiving if one goes only halfway. Death cannot be ignored indefinitely while one is harvesting experience, however joyfully. For Diane Ackerman, death resembles a "horror lesson" noticed out of the corner of one's eye yet disbelieved until a cherished friend, family member or mentor—she commemorates Carl Sagan—suddenly passes away. Whence the increasing need, with age, to assimilate death into one's philosophy. Religious dogma of course offers pat solutions, but what about the agnostic whose only certitude is eschatological uncertainty? Confronting this dilemma with all the precision and enthusiasm for which her writings in the natural sciences have made her well known, Ackerman opts for exalting...

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This section contains 497 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the On Location in the Loire Valley Study Guide
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On Location in the Loire Valley from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.