For the past half-century, John Barth has been recog- nized as our quintessential postmodernist and praised as one of the best writers “we have ever had” (New York Times Book Review). In this unique collection, thirty-six writers and critics look back at Barth’s career, providing a deeper understanding of his books as well as privi- leged glimpses into the man behind the books. John Barth: A Body of Words is a bit of a chimera: a tripartite hybrid of tributes and reminiscences from friends, colleagues, fellow writers, and former students; a sheaf of cutting-edge scholarly essays; and a triadic conclu- sion comprising a description of the Sheridan Libraries Barth Collection, a rare recording of a 1966 public reading by Barth, and a two-part radio interview with him. At once a Festschrift, an assemblage of academic essays written to honor a colleague, and a liber amico- rum, this volume provides Barth’s critics, students, and fans with an essential vade mecum to his life and works.
Gabrielle Dean is the Curator of Literary Rare Books and Manuscripts for Johns Hopkins.
Charles B. Harris is Emeritus Professor of English at Illinois State University.