Ingenious Pain

Topics: Suffering, Friedrich Nietzsche, Emotion Pages: 3 (1190 words) Published: December 6, 2010
The book Ingenious Pain by Andrew Miller takes place during The Enlightenment of the 18th century. This dramatic novel portrays James Dyer, the main character, is born in 1739 without the feeling of pain. In the eight parts of the story, the structure begins near the end in which an autopsy is taken place of James dyer, who died in 1772. The climax of the story is not of his death, but rather the metamorphosis of his human suffering. This change connects with Friedrich Nietzsche theory of pain. "In pain there is as much wisdom as in pleasure: like the latter it is one of the best self preservatives of a species". His theories of suffering, hardships, and pain allow us to understand the goodness of pain. The metamorphosis of Andrew Miller broaden our views in the importance of pain and teach readers important themes essential for growth in life. Dyer's metamorphosis of feeling is prevalent as the novel progresses: From no emotion to insanity; from insanity to compassion.

In the beginning James Dyer's life, he is born in Blind Yeo, an English village. He makes no sound when he is born because he a born without the feeling of pain. He is perceived quite unusual to his family, siblings, and peers from school. He does not talk until he is 11 years old, he has unusual blue eyes in the family, and he does not display any form of emotion. Because of this he lacks empathy, the essence of all human qualities. As his parents die from Smallpox, he is unhindered by the traumatic event of his family. His inability to feel pain also disallows him to feel pleasure. This connects to Friedrich Nietzche theory of pain. He theorized, ”But what if pleasure and pain should be so closely connected that he who wants the greatest possible amount of the one must also have the greatest possible amount of the other, that he who wants to experience the 'heavenly high jubilation,' must also be ready to be 'sorrowful unto death'?" As the German philosopher suggests, James Dyer's...
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