In her latest book, Eva Brann has collected observations and aphorisms written over more than thirty years. Open Secrets / Inward Prospects divides in a rough but ready way into two sorts: observations about our external world well known to all but not always openly told, and sightings of internal vistas and omens, wherein she looks at herself as a sample soul.
Often the aphorisms balance opposing thoughts, as if the writer were—simultaneously—on both ends of the seesaw.
In the preface Eva Brann describes her manner of composition: "I wrote these thoughts down on about two thousand sheets, two to three thoughts per paper, and I kept them in some used manila envelopes, the earliest of which bore a postmark of 1972."
"Open Secrets / Inward Prospects is a book of thoughts of one who thinks about everything. Such a person has a fascinating double life, says Eva Brann, one implicit like us and the other explicit for people like her. Her life is not apart from ours but layered over it. Philosophy for her is not a profession with its own methods, its own lingo, its own ethics abstracted from ordinary life. The philosopher looks at everything, and especially at everything human, but she sees better than the rest of us living with the same things."—The Weekly Standard
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Eva Brann is a member of the senior faculty at St. John's College in Annapolis, Maryland, where she has taught for more than forty years. Brann holds an M.A. in Classics and a Ph.D. in Archaeology from Yale University. Her other books include The Ways of Naysaying; What, Then, Is Time?; and The World of the Imagination. A volume of her selected essays, The Past-Present, was published in 1997.