Magazine June 1, 2020, Issue

Alone Again (Unnaturally)

Monument Valley, United States (Xavi Talleda/Photo Collection/Getty Images)
On solitude chosen and solitude enforced

An aptitude for solitude, I have come to believe, is one of the grand gifts. Not to fear solitude but to look forward to it, to enjoy it, is unavailable to the extroverted and the gregarious. As a boy, I qualified as both extroverted and gregarious. I yearned for company and had no trouble finding it on playgrounds, athletic fields, among a wide variety of friends. In those days the good life for me was the socially crowded life, filled with sports, dances, card games, just hanging out. I should like to be able to report how in those days

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Joseph Epstein — Mr. Epstein is the author, most recently, of Gallimaufry, a Collection of Essays, Reviews, Bits.

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A reader responds to Theodore Kupfer and Ramesh Ponnuru’s article, “Coronavirus Lockdowns: Going the Distance.”

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