The Rings of Saturn - Chapter I Summary & Analysis

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Chapter I Summary

The first chapter of The Rings of Saturn by W.G. Sebald sets the tone for the book entire, beginning with a monologue of a journey he took through the East Anglian countryside (the county of Suffolk in Great Britain) a few years before. He recalls how the open expanses were at once terrifying and freeing in their grand emptiness and equates that to the paralysing emptiness of the time he spent in a mental hospital after a nervous breakdown.

The time he spent in the hospital got him thinking about emptiness, and about his feelings of dislocation from reality, in a similar way to how he felt during his pilgrimage through the Suffolk countryside. The reason for his incarceration into hospital is, we find out, that following the death of his close friend the academic Michael Parkinson a year before...

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This section contains 878 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Rings of Saturn Study Guide
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