Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental questions about existence, values, reason and language. Such questions are posed as problems to be studied or resolved; the term was coined by Pythagoras. Philosophical methods include questioning, critical discussion, rational argument, systematic presentation. Classic philosophical questions include: Is it possible to know anything and to prove it? What is most real? Philosophers pose more practical and concrete questions such as: Is there a best way to live? Is it better to be just or unjust? Do humans have free will? "philosophy" encompassed any body of knowledge. From the time of Ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle to the 19th century, "natural philosophy" encompassed astronomy and physics. For example, Newton's 1687 Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy became classified as a book of physics. In the 19th century, the growth of modern research universities led academic philosophy and other disciplines to professionalize and specialize.
In the modern era, some investigations that were traditionally part of philosophy became separate academic disciplines, including psychology, sociology and economics. Other investigations related to art, politics, or other pursuits remained part of philosophy. For example, is beauty objective or subjective? Are there many scientific methods or just one? Is political utopia a hopeful dream or hopeless fantasy? Major sub-fields of academic philosophy include metaphysics, ethics, political philosophy and philosophy of science. Traditionally, the term "philosophy" referred to any body of knowledge. In this sense, philosophy is related to religion, natural science and politics. Newton's 1687 Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy is classified in the 2000s as a book of physics. In the first part of the first book of his Academics, Cicero introduced the division of philosophy into logic and ethics. Metaphysical philosophy was the study of existence, God, logic and other abstract objects; this division has changed.
Natural philosophy has split into the various natural sciences astronomy, chemistry and cosmology. Moral philosophy still includes value theory. Metaphysical philosophy has birthed formal sciences such as logic and philosophy of science, but still includes epistemology and others. Many philosophical debates that began in ancient times are still debated today. Colin McGinn and others claim. Chalmers and others, by contrast, see progress in philosophy similar to that in science, while Talbot Brewer argued that "progress" is the wrong standard by which to judge philosophical activity. In one general sense, philosophy is associated with wisdom, intellectual culture and a search for knowledge. In that sense, all cultures and literate societies ask philosophical questions such as "how are we to live" and "what is the nature of reality". A broad and impartial conception of philosophy finds a reasoned inquiry into such matters as reality and life in all world civilizations. Western philosophy is the philosophical tradition of the Western world and dates to Pre-Socratic thinkers who were active in Ancient Greece in the 6th century BCE such as Thales and Pythagoras who practiced a "love of wisdom" and were termed physiologoi.
Socrates was a influential philosopher, who insisted that he possessed no wisdom but was a pursuer of wisdom. Western philosophy can be divided into three eras: Ancient, Medieval philosophy, Modern philosophy; the Ancient era was dominated by Greek philosophical schools which arose out of the various pupils of Socrates, such as Plato, who founded the Platonic Academy and his student Aristotle, founding the Peripatetic school, who were both influential in Western tradition. Other traditions include Cynicism, Greek Skepticism and Epicureanism. Important topics covered by the Greeks included metaphysics, the nature of the well-lived life, the possibility of knowledge and the nature of reason. With the rise of the Roman empire, Greek philosophy was increasingly discussed in Latin by Romans such as Cicero and Seneca. Medieval philosophy is the period following the fall of the Western Roman Empire and was dominated by the ris
Publishing is the dissemination of literature, music, or information. It is the activity of making information available to the general public. In some cases, authors may be their own publishers, meaning originators and developers of content provide media to deliver and display the content for the same; the word "publisher" can refer to the individual who leads a publishing company or an imprint or to a person who owns/heads a magazine. Traditionally, the term refers to the distribution of printed works such as newspapers. With the advent of digital information systems and the Internet, the scope of publishing has expanded to include electronic resources such as the electronic versions of books and periodicals, as well as micropublishing, blogs, video game publishers, the like. Publishing includes the following stages of development: acquisition, copy editing, printing and distribution. Publication is important as a legal concept: As the process of giving formal notice to the world of a significant intention, for example, to marry or enter bankruptcy As the essential precondition of being able to claim defamation.
Self-publishing: The author has to meet the total expense to get the book published. The author should retain full rights known as vanity publishing. Publishing became possible with the invention of writing, became more practical upon the introduction of printing. Prior to printing, distributed works were copied manually, by scribes. Due to printing, publishing progressed hand-in-hand with the development of books; the Chinese inventor Bi Sheng made movable type of earthenware circa 1045, but there are no known surviving examples of his printing. Around 1450, in what is regarded as an independent invention, Johannes Gutenberg invented movable type in Europe, along with innovations in casting the type based on a matrix and hand mould; this invention made books less expensive to produce, more available. Early printed books, single sheets and images which were created before 1501 in Europe are known as incunables or incunabula. "A man born in 1453, the year of the fall of Constantinople, could look back from his fiftieth year on a lifetime in which about eight million books had been printed, more than all the scribes of Europe had produced since Constantine founded his city in A.
D. 330."Eventually, printing enabled other forms of publishing besides books. The history of modern newspaper publishing started in Germany in 1609, with publishing of magazines following in 1663. Publishing has been handled by publishers, with the history of self-publishing progressing until the advent of computers brought us electronic publishing, made evermore ubiquitous from the moment the world went online with the Internet; the establishment of the World Wide Web in 1989 soon propelled the website into a dominant medium of publishing, as websites are created by anyone with Internet access. The history of wikis started shortly thereafter, followed by the history of blogging. Commercial publishing progressed, as printed forms developed into online forms of publishing, distributing online books, online newspapers, online magazines. Since its start, the World Wide Web has been facilitating the technological convergence of commercial and self-published content, as well as the convergence of publishing and producing into online production through the development of multimedia content.
Book and magazine publishers spend a lot of commissioning copy. At a small press, it is possible to survive by relying on commissioned material, but as activity increases, the need for works may outstrip the publisher's established circle of writers. For works written independently of the publisher, writers first submit a query letter or proposal directly to a literary agent or to a publisher. Submissions sent directly to a publisher are referred to as unsolicited submissions, the majority come from unpublished authors. If the publisher accepts unsolicited manuscripts the manuscript is placed in the slush pile, which publisher's readers sift through to identify manuscripts of sufficient quality or revenue potential to be referred to acquisitions editors for review; the acquisitions editors send their choices to the editorial staff. The time and number of people involved in the process are dependent on the size of the publishing company, with larger companies having more degrees of assessment between unsolicited submission and publication.
Unsolicited submissions have a low rate of acceptance, with some sources estimating that publishers choose about three out of every ten thousand unsolicited manuscripts they receive. Many book publishers around the world maintain a strict "no unsolicited submissions" policy and will only accept submissions via a literary agent; this policy shifts the burden of assessing and developing writers out of the publisher and onto the literary agents. At these publishers, unsolicited manuscripts are thrown out, or sometimes returned, if the author has provided pre-paid postage. Established authors may be represented by a literary agent to market their work to publishers and n
Gabriel Liiceanu is a Romanian philosopher. He graduated from the University of Bucharest's Faculty of Philosophy in 1965, from Faculty of Classical Languages in 1973, he earned a doctorate in philosophy at the University of Bucharest in 1976. Between 1965 and 1975, Liiceanu was a researcher at the Institute of Philosophy, between 1975 and 1989 at the Institute of Art History, he received a fellowship from the Humboldt Foundation between 1982 and 1984. He has been the manager of Humanitas publishing house since 1990, he has been professor at the University of Bucharest's Faculty of Philosophy since 1992. Liiceanu is a founding member of the Group for Social Dialogue, president of the Romanian Publishers' Association, member of the scientific council of New Europe College. Between 1998 and 2001, he was a member of the Romanian National Television's Administrative Board, he was influenced by his mentor, Constantin Noica during the time spent at Păltiniş. Noica, a Romanian philosopher known abroad as well as in the country, used to take his most valuable students and followers to his small house at Păltiniş, where he would teach them what they afterwards called "not philosophy lessons, but spiritual experiences".
Another Noica follower, invited to Păltiniş was Andrei Pleșu. Liiceanu refers to that experience in his books as the "Păltiniş School" and the term began to be accepted and used in Romanian, as well as European, philosophy. Liiceanu continued to publish well into the 2000s, he remains a mainstream figure in Romanian intellectual public life, with close connections with Andrei Plesu, Monica Lovinescu and Virgil Ierunca. One critic, Gabriel Andreescu, suggested that Liiceanu facilitated extremism by allowing his publishing house to edit the works of inter-war Romanian figures whom Andreescu accused of being "ideologues of right-wing extremism". Tragicul. O fenomenologie a limitei şi depăşirii, 1975 Încercare în politropia omului şi a culturii, 1981 Jurnalul de la Păltiniş. Un model paideic în cultura umanistă, 1983 Le Journal de Păltiniş, La Decouverte, Paris, 1998 Paltiniş Diary, CEU Press and New York, 2000 Epistolar, 1987, coauthor and editor Apel către lichele, 1992 Cearta cu filozofia. Eseuri, 1992 Despre limită, 1994 De la limite, Ed.
Michalon, Paris, 1997 Itinerariile unei vieţi: EM. Cioran urmat de Apocalipsa după Cioran. Trei zile de convorbiri - 1990, 1995 Itineraires d'une vie: E. M. Cioran suivi de Les Continents de l'insomnie, Ed. Michalon, Paris, 1995 Apocalypsen enligt Cioran, Dualis Forlags, Suedia, 1997 Declaraţie de iubire, 2001 Uşa interzisă, 2002 Om şi simbol. Interpretări ale simbolului în teoria artei şi filozofia culturii, 2005 Despre minciună, 2006 Despre ură, 2007 Scrisori către fiul meu, 2008 Întâlnire cu un necunoscut, 2010 Întâlnire în jurul unei palme Zen, 2011 Meeting with a StrangerHis books are being published in Brazil by Editora Ecclesiae. From Greek and German: Plato, Aristotelic commentators, German philosophers Exerciţiu de admiraţie, 1991, with Constantin Chelba interview with Eugène Ionesco, 1992 Apocalipsa după Cioran, 1995, with Sorin Ilieşiu Uşa interzisă, 2003 Noica, 2003, with Andrei Pleșu Apel către lichele, 2006 Declaraţie de iubire, 2006 Sebastian, mon frère. Scrisoare către un frate mai mare, 2006 Strategii ale seducţiei.
De la Romeo şi Julieta la sărutul cioranian, 2006 Romanian Writers' Union Prize, 1983, for Păltiniş Diary Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, 1992 Great Prize of the Romanian Film-makers Union, 1992, ex-aequo, for Exercise of Admiration Cross of Merit, First class, of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, 2006, for promotion of German language and culture in Romania Knight of the Order of the Star of Romania, 2006 http://www.cariereonline.ro/articol/gabriel-liiceanu-conducatorul-seducator http://www.evz.ro/dragnea-il-face-mincinos-pe-liiceanu-o-minciuna-este-o-minciuna.html http://www.evz.ro/dragnea-scrisoare-catre-presedintele-comisiei-libe.html https://ecclesiae.com.br/index.php?route=product/author&author_id=1034
Mircea Cărtărescu is a Romanian novelist, short-story writer, literary critic and essayist. He is a graduate of Cantemir Vodă National College. During his school years, he was a member of literary groups led by Nicolae Manolescu and Ovid S. Crohmălniceanu, his first poetry was written in 1978. He studied at the University of Bucharest's Faculty of Letters, Department of Romanian Language and Literature, he graduated in 1980 with a thesis that became his book on poetry The Chimaeric Dream. That same year, some of his works were published by Cartea Românească. Between 1980 and 1989 he worked as a Romanian language teacher worked at the Writers' Union of Romania and as an editor at Caiete Critice magazine. In 1991 he became a lecturer at the Chair of Romanian Literary History, part of the University of Bucharest Faculty of Letters; as of 2010, he is an associate professor there. Between 1994–1995 he was a visiting lecturer at the University of Amsterdam and holds the same position at the University of Stuttgart.
In 2012, he received the International Literature Award for his novel The Body. He is married to Ioana Nicolaie, his works have been translated into most European languages. His debut as a writer was in 1978 in România Literară magazine. Faruri, fotografii... Cartea Românească, 1980 – Writers Union Prize, 1980 Poeme de amor, Cartea Românească, 1982. Totul, Cartea Românească, 1984. Levantul, Cartea Românească, 1990 – Writers Union Prize, 1990, republished by Humanitas in 1998. Dragostea, Humanitas, 1994. 50 de sonete de Mircea Cărtărescu cu cincizeci de desene de Tudor Jebeleanu, Brumar, 2003 Desant'83, Cartea Românească, 1983. Visul, Cartea Românească, 1989 – Romanian Academy Prize, 1989. Le rêve, Climats, 1992, ISBN 2-907563-55-6 – nominated for the Medicis prize. Nostalgia, full edition of "Visul", Humanitas, 1993. New Directions Publishing Corporation, Translation by Julian Semilian, Introduction by Andrei Codrescu 2005, ISBN 0-8112-1588-1 Travesti, Humanitas, 1994 – Writers Union Prize 1994. 1, Aripa stângă, Humanitas, 1996 Gallimard, Translation by Alain Paruit, 2002, ISBN 2-07-042265-8 Jurnal, Humanitas, 2001, ISBN 973-50-0095-4 Jurnal I, 1990–1996, Humanitas, 2005, 2nd Ed.
ISBN 973-50-0985-4 Orbitor, vol. 2, Humanitas, 2002 Enciclopedia zmeilor, Humanitas, 2002 De ce iubim femeile, Humanitas, 2004, ISBN 973-50-0869-6 Jurnal II, 1997–2003, Humanitas, 2005, ISBN 973-50-0986-2 Orbitor, vol. 3, Aripa dreaptă, Humanitas, 2007 Frumoasele străine, Humanitas, 2010 Solenoid, Humanitas, 2015 Visul chimeric, Litera, 1991 Postmodernismul românesc, Ph. D. thesis, Humanitas, 1999 Pururi tânăr, înfăşurat în pixeli, Humanitas, 2003 Baroane!, Humanitas, 2005 Parfumul aspru al ficţiunii, Humanitas, 2003 1980: Romanian Writers' Union Prize 1989: Romanian Academy's Prize 1990: Romanian Writer's Unions Prize, Flacăra magazine Prize, Ateneu magazine Prize, Tomis magazine Prize, Cuvântul magazine Prize 1992: Le Rêve nominee for: Prix Mèdicis, Prix Union Latine, Le meilleur livre étranger 1994: Romanian Writer's Union Prize, ASPRO Prize, Moldavian Writers' Union Prize 1996: ASPRO Prize, Flacăra magazine Prize, Ateneu magazine Prize, Tomis magazine Prize, Cuvântul magazine Prize 1997: Flacăra magazine Prize, Ateneu magazine Prize, Tomis magazine Prize, Cuvântul magazine Prize 1999: Orbitor's French translation nominee for Prix Union Latine 2000: Romanian Writers Association Prize 2002: ASPRO Prize, AER Prize 2006: Grand Officer of the Cultural Merit Order, awarded by Romanian Presidency 2011: Vilenica Prize 2012: International literatur prize „Haus der Kulturen der Welt 2012”, Berlin 2013: Spycher – Literary Prize Leuk, Switzerland 2013: Grand Prix of the Novi Sad International Poetry Festival 2014: Best Translated Book Award, shortlisted for Blinding, translated from the Romanian into English by Sean Cotter 2014: Premio Euskadi de Plata to the Best Book of 2014 for Las Bellas Extranjeras, translated from the Romanian into Spanish by Marian Ochoa de Eribe 2015: Leipzig Book Award for European Understanding for Blinding 2015: Austrian State Prize for European Literature 2016: Premio Gregor von Rezzori for Blinding 2018: Thomas Mann Prize 2018: Prix Formentor Testament – Anthology of Modern Romanian Verse second edition – bilingual version English/Romanian.
Daniel Ionita – editor and principal translator, with Eva Foster, Daniel Reynaud and Rochelle Bews. Minerva Publishing House. Bucharest 2015. ISBN 978-973-21-1006-5 Excerpt from The Roulette Player, story from Nostalgia, by Mircea Cărtărescu, at WordsWithoutBorders.org Mircea Cărtărescu's page at Humanitas publishing house Mircea Cărtărescu's page at Zsolnay/Hanser Verlage publishing house A review of Nostalgia by Joshua Cohen at New Haven Review Cartarescu meets his readers at the International Book Fair of Turin, Italy
Lena Constante was a Romanian artist and memoirist, known for her work in stage design and tapestry. A family friend of Communist Party politician Lucreţiu Pătrăşcanu, she was arrested by the Communist regime following the conflict between Pătrăşcanu and Gheorghe Gheorghiu-Dej, she was spent twelve years as a political prisoner. Constante was the wife of the musicologist Harry Brauner, the sister-in-law of the painter Victor Brauner. Born in Bucharest, she was the daughter of his Romanian wife; the Constante family left the city during the World War I German occupation, Lena spent much of her childhood in Iaşi, Odessa and Paris. Returning at the end of the conflict, she studied Painting at the Romanian Art Academy in Bucharest, established friendships with leading intellectuals of her time, including Brauner, Mircea Vulcănescu, Petru Comarnescu, Henri H. Stahl, Mihail Sebastian, Paul Sterian. During the period, she became sympathetic to left-wing politics and joined the sociological project initiated by Dimitrie Gusti, aiding in the creation of comprehensive monographs on traditional Romanian society.
Constante first exhibited her art in 1934, had personal shows in 1935, 1946. After 1945, she was employed as a stage designer by the newly founded Ţăndărică Theater, where she met Elena Pătrăşcanu, Lucreţiu's wife. In early 1946, when Pătrăşcanu, Romania's Minister of Justice, decided to go against the will of his party and intervened in the standoff between King Michael I and the Petru Groza executive, she mediated between him and two well-known anti-communist figures Victor Rădulescu-Pogoneanu and Grigore Niculescu-Buzeşti, in an attempt to ensure their support for a political compromise. Together with her friend Brauner, as well as Remus Koffler, Belu Zilber, Petre Pandrea, Herant Torosian, Ionel Mocsony Stârcea, the engineer Emil Calmanovici, Alexandru Ştefănescu and others, she was implicated in Pătrăşcanu's 1954 trial, being sentenced to twelve years in prison; the person who took initiative in bringing her to trial was Securitate deputy chief Alexandru Nicolschi. During repeated interrogations by the Securitate, Constante tried to fend off false accusations of "Titoism" and "treason", the victim of constant beatings and torture, confronted with Zilber's testimony — which implicated her —, she gave in and admitted to the charges.
Throughout the rest of her life, she maintained a critical view of Zilber, expressed her admiration for Pătrăşcanu, who had for long resisted pressures and had been executed in the end. As she stated in 2004, "I did not know too well, it was not him. Neither was it Mrs. Elena, his friend, Belu Zilber, made us go to me and my husband. Zilber was never pleased with all the things he kept inventing in his confessions and he would concoct some stuff that aimed to please the interrogators. To please Dej." For much of her time in prison, Constante was kept in complete solitude, a special regime which she attributed to her earlier refusal to confess. Beaten and again tortured during her stay in special prisons for women, she much confessed that she was never able to forgive the people responsible for her plight, she was freed in 1962. They both were rehabilitated during Nicolae Ceauşescu's campaign of reviewing Romania's history under Gheorghiu-Dej. Constante exhibited her works on two other occasions. In 1990, after the Romanian Revolution, she published her French-language autobiography L'évasion silencieuse, at the Éditions La Découverte in Paris.
The volume, which Vladimir Tismăneanu has compared to the works of Margarete Buber-Neumann, is written as a diary, makes use of her prolific memory, which allowed her to record an immense succession of days, years after events had passed. It won the Prize of French-Language Writers' Association, was translated into English as The Silent Escape: Three Thousand Days in Romanian Prisons, with a preface by Gail Kligman. In 1993, she published Evadarea imposibilă. Penitenciarul politic de femei Miercurea Ciuc 1957-1961. In 1997, Constante starred as herself in Nebunia Capetelor, a film by Thomas Ciulei based on The Silent Escape. Biography at the Humanitas site "Evocare Lena Constante: expoziţie şi album", in Ziua, December 1, 2005 "Un film despre Lena Constante: Nebunia capetelor, de Thomas Ciulei, la ICR", LiterNet press release Lavinia Betea, "Ambiţia de a intra în istorie", in Magazin Istoric Ruxandra Cesereanu, "Reprezentanţii represiunii: anchetatorul rafinat, torţionarul sadic şi bufonul balcanizat" ("The Representatives of R
Emil Cioran was a Romanian philosopher and essayist, who published works in both Romanian and French. His work has been noted for its pervasive philosophical pessimism, engages with issues of suffering and nihilism. Among his best-known works are On the Heights of Despair and The Trouble with Being Born. Cioran's first French book, A Short History of Decay, was awarded the prestigious Rivarol Prize in 1950; the Latin Quarter of Paris was his permanent residence and he lived much of his life in isolation with his partner Simone Boué. Cioran was born in Resinár, Szeben County, part of Austria-Hungary at the time, his father, Emilian Cioran, was an Orthodox priest. His mother, was from Veneția de Jos, a commune near Făgăraș. After focusing on Humanities at the Gheorghe Lazăr High School in Sibiu, Cioran, at age 17, entered the University of Bucharest, where he studied philosophy and met Eugène Ionesco and Mircea Eliade, who became his friends. Future Romanian philosopher Constantin Noica and future Romanian thinker Petre Țuțea became his closest academic colleagues.
Cioran, Țuțea became supporters of Ionescu's ideas, known as Trăirism. Cioran had a good command of German, his early studies revolved around Immanuel Kant, Arthur Schopenhauer, Friedrich Nietzsche. He became an agnostic, taking as an axiom "the inconvenience of existence". While at the University, he was influenced by Georg Simmel, Ludwig Klages and Martin Heidegger, but by the Russian philosopher Lev Shestov, whose contribution to Cioran’s central system of thought was the belief that life is arbitrary. Cioran's graduation thesis was on Henri Bergson, whom he rejected, claiming Bergson did not comprehend the tragedy of life. In 1933, he received a scholarship to the University of Berlin, where he came into contact with Klages and Nicolai Hartmann. While in Berlin, he became interested in the policies of the Nazi regime, contributed a column to Vremea dealing with the topic, and, in a letter written to Petru Comarnescu, described himself as "a Hitlerist", he held similar views about Italian fascism, welcoming victories in the Second Italo-Abyssinian War, arguing that: "Fascism is a shock, without which Italy is a compromise comparable to today's Romania".
Cioran’s first book, On the Heights of Despair, was published in Romania in 1934. It was awarded the Commission’s Prize and the Young Writers Prize for one of the best books written by an unpublished young writer. Successively, The Book of Delusions, The Transfiguration of Romania, Tears and Saints, were published in Romania. Although Cioran was never a member of the group, it was during this time in Romania that he began taking an interest in the ideas put forth by the Iron Guard—a far right organization whose nationalist ideology he supported until the early years of World War II, despite disapproving of their violent methods. Cioran revised The Transfiguration of Romania in its second edition released in the 1990s, eliminating numerous passages he considered extremist or "pretentious and stupid". In its original form, the book expressed sympathy for totalitarianism, a view, present in various articles Cioran wrote at the time, which aimed to establish "urbanization and industrialization" as "the two obsessions of a rising people".
Marta Petreu's An Infamous Past: E. M. Cioran and the Rise of Fascism in Romania, published in English in 2005, gives an in-depth analysis of The Transfiguration, his early call for modernization was, hard to reconcile with the traditionalism of the Iron Guard. In 1934, he wrote, "I find that in Romania the sole fertile and invigorating nationalism can only be one which does not just dismiss tradition, but denies and defeats it". Disapproval of what he viewed as Romanian traits had been present in his works, which led to criticism from the far right Gândirea, as well as from various Iron Guard papers. After returning from Berlin in 1936, Cioran taught philosophy at the Andrei Șaguna High School in Brașov for a year. In 1937, he left for Paris with a scholarship from the French Institute of Bucharest, prolonged until 1944. After a short stay in his home country, Cioran never returned again; this last period in Romania was the one in which he exhibited a closer relationship with the Iron Guard, which by had taken power.
On 28 November, for the state-owned Romanian Radio, Cioran recorded a speech centered on the portrait of Corneliu Zelea Codreanu, former leader of the movement, praising him and the Guard for, among other things, "having given Romanians a purpose". He renounced not only his support for the Iron Guard, but their nationalist ideas, expressed regret and repentance for his emotional implication in it. For example, in a 1972
Eugène Ionesco was a Romanian-French playwright who wrote in French, one of the foremost figures of the French Avant-garde theatre. Beyond ridiculing the most banal situations, Ionesco's plays depict the solitude and insignificance of human existence in a tangible way. Ionesco was born in Slatina, Romania, to a Romanian father belonging to the Orthodox Christian church and a mother of French and Romanian heritage, whose faith was Protestant. Eugène himself was baptized into the Orthodox Christian faith. Many sources cite his birthdate as 1912, this error being due to vanity on the part of Ionesco himself, who wanted the year of his birth to coincide with that when his idol, Romanian playwright Caragiale, died, he spent most of his childhood in France and, while there, had an experience he claimed affected his perception of the world more than any other. As Deborah B. Gaensbauer describes in Eugène Ionesco Revisited, "Walking in summer sunshine in a white-washed provincial village under an intense blue sky, was profoundly altered by the light."
He was struck suddenly with a feeling of intense luminosity, the feeling of floating off the ground and an overwhelming feeling of well-being. When he "floated" back to the ground and the "light" left him, he saw that the real world in comparison was full of decay and meaningless repetitive action; this coincided with the revelation that death takes everyone in the end. Much of his work, reflecting this new perception, demonstrates a disgust for the tangible world, a distrust of communication, the subtle sense that a better world lies just beyond our reach. Echoes of this experience can be seen in references and themes in many of his important works: characters pining for an unattainable "city of lights" or perceiving a world beyond, he returned to Romania with his mother in 1925 after his parents divorced. There he attended Saint Sava National College, after which he studied French Literature at the University of Bucharest from 1928 to 1933 and qualified as a teacher of French. While there he met Emil Cioran and Mircea Eliade, the three became lifelong friends.
In 1936 Ionesco married Rodica Burileanu. Together they had one daughter for. With his family, he returned to France in 1938. Caught by the outbreak of World War II in 1939, he returned to Romania, but soon changed his mind and, with the help of friends, obtained travel documents which allowed him to return to France in 1942, where he remained during the rest of the war, living in Marseilles before moving with his family to Paris after its liberation. Though best known as a playwright, plays were not his first chosen medium, he started publishing in several Romanian journals. Two early writings of note are Nu, a book criticizing many other writers, including prominent Romanian poets, Hugoliade, or, The grotesque and tragic life of Victor Hugo a satirical biography mocking Victor Hugo's status as a great figure in French literature; the Hugoliade includes exaggerated retellings of the most scandalous episodes in Hugo's life and contains prototypes for many of Ionesco's themes: the ridiculous authoritarian character, the false worship of language.
Like Samuel Beckett, Ionesco began his theatre career late. At the age of 40, he decided to learn English using the Assimil method, conscientiously copying whole sentences in order to memorize them. Re-reading them, he began to feel that he was not learning English, rather he was discovering some astonishing truths such as the fact that there are seven days in a week, that the ceiling is up and the floor is down; this feeling only intensified with the introduction in lessons of the characters known as "Mr. and Mrs. Smith". To her husband's astonishment, Mrs. Smith informed him that they had several children, that they lived in the vicinity of London, that their name was Smith, that Mr. Smith was a clerk, that they had a servant, English like themselves. What was remarkable about Mrs. Smith, Ionesco thought, was her eminently methodical procedure in her quest for truth. For Ionesco, the clichés and truisms of the conversation primer disintegrated into wild caricature and parody with language itself disintegrating into disjointed fragments of words.
Ionesco set about translating this experience into a play, La Cantatrice Chauve, performed for the first time in 1950 under the direction of Nicolas Bataille. It was far from a success and went unnoticed until a few established writers and critics, among them Jean Anouilh and Raymond Queneau, championed the play. Ionesco's earliest theatrical works, considered to be his most innovative, were one-act plays or extended sketches: La Cantatrice Chauve translated as The Bald Soprano or The Bald Prima Donna, Jacques ou la soumission translated as Jack, or The Submission, La Leçon translated as The Lesson, Les Sa