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어느 영국인 아편중독자의 고백 Confessions of an English opium-eater

드 퀸시는 36세에 이 작품의 초고를 썼고 평생에 걸쳐 수정을 가한다. 때문에 이 책에서 그의 경험은 비단 자의적이고 극적으로 표현되었다기 보다는 아편 후의 꿈을 통해 왜곡된 기억을 포함한다고 하겠다. 중독자가 겪는 고통과 자아붕괴에 대한 리얼리즘을 기대하는 독자는 이 책이 실망스러울 수 있다. 이 작품은 명목상으로만 약물 중독이라는 주제와 맞닿아있다. 드 퀸시의 시대에는 아편이 합법일 뿐 아니라 싸게 구할 수 있는 약품이었다. 이 책은 마약 복용으로 현대인이 겪는 불안이나 소외와 아무런 상관이 없다. 이 책은 원천적으로 약물 복용에 관한 이야기가 아니다. 오히려 우리의 익숙한 일상 환경을 낯설고 신기한 것으로 변화시키는 상상력의 역할과 꿈의 능력에 대한 텍스트로 읽어야한다. 이것이 바로 심리지리학 전통에서 드 퀸시가 놓여질 지점이다.

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Confessions of an English Opium-Eater is an autobiographical account written by Thomas De Quincey, about his laudanum (opium and alcohol) addiction and its effect on his life. The Confessions was "the first major work De Quincey published and the one which won him fame almost overnight..." First published anonymously in September and October 1821 in the London Magazine, the Confessions was released in book form in 1822, and again in 1856, in an edition revised by De Quincey.