Existentialism in the novel of Vitomil Zupan. - The fundamental pattern of Zupan's novel heroes is transposed to oscillating, varied derivations of the consequences of metaphysical nihilism as the basis of different positions for the subject in his novels: he derives it from neoromanticism, decadence and post-naturalism. The influence of social realism can be found since Klement (most developed in Človek letnih časov, The Human of Seasons). Sometimes he employs the formal stylistic meand of modernism (especially in Menuet, Minuet, and Apokalipsa, Apocalypse), although "strong, vital, romantic subjectivity" limits a possibly fuller development of both modernist and existentialist elements. Zupan actually also starts from existentialist themes, sometimes he even allows the temporary dominance of the truth of the absurd; because of his vitality, however, he cannot accept absurdity as the final solution. In an action-charged treatment of the will as the power of cognition, he firmly believes in a real, though still undiscovered truth of the human passion for life, which would surpass the absurd road to nothingness. The paradigmatic scheme of Zupan's opus therefore seems to lie in Menuet za kitaro (Minuet for Guitar), with the symbolism of human life as awalking in circles: from pure passion for life, which is formed with the will to power as the will to freedom and cognition, to a temporary recognition of the absurd consignment to nothing, it then follows to the heroic pessimism of a novel of human fate, another victory of vitality, etc. This walking in circles is an explanation of the blocade of existentialism in Zupan's opus. Occasionally, (and probably even more, following the examples ofMalraux' La Voie Royale or Céline) he recognizes the self-blockade or auto-destructiveness of Nietzschean acts of will to power; but this is an exception rather than a rule, evident especially in Klement, Apokalipsa (Apocalypse) and the play Aleksander praznih rok (Alexander Empty Handed). Most often, however, derivations of the will to power quite unproblematically predominate since they confirm Zupan's "inborn" optimistic vitality.