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The Antioch Review – Spring 2004

I have always loved The Antioch Review and this “All Essay” issue deepens my appreciation. The editors succeed in demonstrating that “essays…comes in all forms and about all subjects” and in meeting their goal to “highlight [the essay’s] diversity and vivacity.” This would make a fine volume for any workshop in the essay’s strengths and varieties and is exceptional reading for any devotee of serious nonfiction. The thirteen essays include political/social analysis (Bruce Jackson, Bruce Fleming, Michael Meyers and John P. Nidiry, Irwin Abrams), personal essays (Floyd Skloot, Nick Papandreou, P.F. Kluge, Paul Christensen, Carol Hebald),

I have always loved The Antioch Review and this “All Essay” issue deepens my appreciation. The editors succeed in demonstrating that “essays…comes in all forms and about all subjects” and in meeting their goal to “highlight [the essay’s] diversity and vivacity.” This would make a fine volume for any workshop in the essay’s strengths and varieties and is exceptional reading for any devotee of serious nonfiction. The thirteen essays include political/social analysis (Bruce Jackson, Bruce Fleming, Michael Meyers and John P. Nidiry, Irwin Abrams), personal essays (Floyd Skloot, Nick Papandreou, P.F. Kluge, Paul Christensen, Carol Hebald), a short biography/book essay that happily defies categorization (Barbara Sjoholm), art critique/biography (Steven Vincent, Alex Colville), and a personal/scholarly consideration of the art of translation (Lawrence Rosenwald). Of course, these essays fit all and none of these categories at the same time, which is, partly, what makes them successful. They display thoughtful scholarship, keen powers of observation, and deft, but widely different styles of composition. They reveal new information and insights about familiar topics (Abrams on Jimmy Carter and Jackson on the “Real O.J. Story”), introduce us to the unfamiliar (Sjoholm on Olaus Magnus) and translate these writers’ idiosyncratic worlds (Papandreou on growing up bilingual, Christensen on growing up in Beirut, Kluge on breakfast in Ohio). [The Antioch Review, P.O. Box 148, Yellow Springs, OH 45387. E-mail: [email protected]. Single issue $8. http://www.antioch.edu/review/home.html] – SR

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