Synopses & Reviews
Praise for The Enigma of Anger
"Wise and beautiful . . . This book is distinguished above all by its prose. What might have been merely a spiritual ‘how-to’ on anger management is transformed into a literary achievement by Keizer’s way with words."
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"A wonderfully thoughtful, compelling, psychologically knowing book that is graced with wisdom."
—Robert Coles, author, Children of Crisis series
"Provocative, thoughtful, and supremely useful, this book is a brave expedition to a place most of us would rather not go. . . . A healthy and much-needed antidote to a slew of cultural orthodoxies . . . the kind of blessing that comes from God, and that endures."
—Kathleen Norris, The Christian Century
"It is no small irony that Garret Keizer's essay on anger is so thoughtful and graceful. Here is writing that triumphs over an emotion that otherwise, so often, defeats reason and frustrates love."
—Richard Rodriguez, author, Brown
“Given the amount of rage that exists throughout all levels and strata of modern society, The Enigma of Anger
couldn’t arrive at a better time.”--Booklist
“If you want to consider anger with a congenial (but not comforting) man of God who has sharp eyes and ears, read Keizer’s book.”--Guy Davenport, Harper’s Magazine
“A passionate and profound meditation on the nature of a greatly maligned emotion. This is a splendid book.”--Ron Hansen, author, Hitler’s Niece
“The Enigma of Anger is a thoughtful, principled, and honest interrogation of a disquieting subject. . . . The result is useful and humane.”--Phillip Lopate, author, Portrait of My Body
“This book is clearly a masterpiece.”--Noel Perrin, author, Giving Up the Gun: Japan’s Reversion to the Sword, 1543-1879
“There is enough edgi ness in this book on anger to convince you that Garret Keizer knows what he is talking about; there is also enough grace to make you think about anger—both human and divine—in a whole new way.”--Barbara Brown Taylor, author, When God Is Silent
“A timely book about the uses—good and otherwise—of anger and about what it truly means to be human, by one of the finest and most courageous writers at work in America today.” --Howard Frank Mosher, author, The True Account
Rage, resentment, envy, jealousy, and hatred— these emotions seem to dominate our times. They rule our highways, our workplaces, our homes, and our hearts.
In this provocative book of essays, writer Garret Keizer considers anger in all its baffling forms. Poignantly aware of his own temper, and of his ties to a religion that glorifies meekness, the author looks at anger as a paradox in our struggle to remain human in the midst of an infuriating world. Interweaving personal anecdotes, mythological stories, sacred texts, and Keizer's insightful observations, The Enigma of Anger will prove a welcome companion for anyone who has ever wrestled with wrath-or wished to make better use of it.
About the Author
Garret Keizer has served as an Episcopal priest and as a high school English teacher. He is the author of God of Beer, No Place But Here, and the critically acclaimed A Dresser of Sycamore Trees. His work also appears in The Christian Century and Harper's Magazine. He lives in northeastern Vermont with his wife and daughter.
Table of Contents
ANGER IN THE LORD
Where I Come From 5
The Wrath of God 15
Christ the Tiger 25
The Deadly Sin 39
Even in the Desert 55
ANGER IN THE HEAD
Anger as Mentality 69
Anger as Fear 81
Anger as Privilege 97
Anger as Grief 111
Anger as Grace 125
ANGER IN THE HOUSE
The Chronic Angers of the House 137
Angry Men: Agamemnon and Saul, Michael Henchard and Wade Ward 149
Angry Women: Clytemnestra and Boudica, Medea and Sethe 167
Anger and Children 185
Domestic Revolution 197
ANGER IN THE CHURCH
They That Are Sick 211
Passion Plays 225
Loving the Enemy 251
Anger at God 267
ANGER IN THE WORLD
Venturing Out 317
Napoleon's Test 331
Someday You Will 351
The Author 363
Read an exclusive essay by Garret Keizer