1000 Feelings For Which There Are No Names

I had no idea I’d enjoy 1000 Feelings For Which There Are No Names as much as I did. It’s an inspirational book, a spur for creativity or a way to start conversations or a kind of print magic eightball oracle. It’s a catalog of exactly what it says, a list of emotions but described in such a way that each one evokes a moment of sympathy or understanding.

It’s translated from Mario Giordano’s German by Isabel Fargo Cole, and although there is an illustration credit, there are no pictures as such. Instead, Ray Fenwick hand-letters each feeling differently, so it’s also an amazing catalog of type styles and designs. The best way to understand it is to see a couple of pages:

1000 Feelings for Which There Are No Names pages

I found myself most agreeing with the emotions that don’t reflect particularly well on me, the ones about jealousy or irritation, so I need to spend more time thinking about the more positive ones, particularly those taking joy in small things, such as #821, “The happiness of realizing that you actually have no worries at the moment.”

1000 Feelings For Which There Are No Names is not a book to read, but one to dip into or sample, so as not to overwhelm oneself with new ideas. There’s also an index, where everything is categorized under topics, such as “Christmas feelings” or “Haircut feelings” or “Sibling feelings”. It’s a lovely surprise, a quirky example of imagination on the page. (The publisher provided a review copy.)

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