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[Perspectives] The aftermath of addiction

“And did you get/what you wanted from this life, even so…And what did you want?/To call myself beloved, to feel myself/beloved upon the earth.” These words of Raymond Carver’s are written on his gravestone. At the end of The Recovering: Intoxication and Its Aftermath, Leslie Jamison makes her pilgrimage towards it, searching for the metal box kept beside which she knows contains a visitors’ book. She chases through it for words of fellow travellers, only to find that it is new, recently replaced and mainly blank.