The Outsider was an instant literary sensation when it was first published in 1956, thrusting its youthful author into the front rank of contemporary writers and thinkers. Wilson rationalized the psychological dislocation so characteristic of Western creative thinking into a coherent theory of alienation, and defined those affected by it as a type: the Outsider. Through the works and lives of various artists - including Kafka, Camus, Hemingway, Hesse, Lawrence, Van Gogh, Shaw, Nietzsche and Dostoevsky - Wilson explored the psyche of the Outsider, his effect on society and society's on him. Nothing that has happened in the past four decades years has made The Outsider any less relevant; it remains the seminal work on this most persistent of modern-day preoccupations.
Colin Wilson was a prominent philosopher and novelist. Wilson called his philosophy 'new existentialism'. He is perhaps best known for THE OUTSIDER. It has never been out of print and has been translated into over thirty languages.