Robert Musil has been called the Austrian Proust, and his major, and unfinished novel, is a classic of 20th-century literature. The first volume of this novel, translated by Sophie Wilkins, begins as comedy of manners among the upper classes on the eve of World War I. Musil, who trained as a behavioral psychologist and mathematician, explores the effects of science’s relativization of values on the dissipated lives and psyches of his protagonists. The novel’s language is essayistic, experimental, lucid, though often dreamlike. Characters converse for hours over politics, music, poetry, death, philosophy, sexuality, and insanity. Volume II includes Burton Pike’s translation of several hundred pages of additional scenes and notes by the author. These pages allow one to peer into the workshop and mind of one of the last century’s greatest authors. Check this out!