by John Barth
$23.00 List Price
John Barth once likened postmodernism to tying a necktie simultaneous with providing a detailed explanation of the procedure while also discussing the history of neckties and still ending up with a perfect Windsor knot. It’s an entirely credible definition of the concept—some days I’d happily accept it in exchange for the whole of my small library on the subject—and charming, too. Barth’s always been a charmer, although at nearly eighty years old he’s more like the lovable old uncle who’s been entertaining the kids with that necktie routine for about fifty years than the onetime vigorous advocate for “passionate virtuosity.” The kids shout, “Do it again!” and so he does. Nothing wrong with that, but grown-ups who’ve already heard about the Steinkirk cravat, or whatever, are likely to wander off to the bar.
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