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Maurice Blanchot (19072003), one of the most influential figures of twentieth-century French literature, produced a wide variety of essays and fictions that reflect on the complexities of literary work. His description of writing continually returns to a number of themes, such as solitude, passivity, indifference, anonymity, and absence-forces confronting the writer, but also the reader, the text itself, and the relations between the three. For Blanchot, literature involves a movement toward disappearance, where one risks the loss of self; but such a sacrifice, says Blanchot, is inherent in the act of writing. Approaching Disappearance explores the question of disappearance in Blanchot's critical work and then turns to five narratives that offer a unique reflection on the threat of disappearance and the demands of literature-work by Franz Kafka, Jorge Luis Borges, Louis-René Des Forêts, and Nathalie Sarraute.