Small Worldby David Lodge
Veteran rivals for an exclusive academic chair (recently endowed with $100,000 a year) do scholarly battle with each other in what the Washington Post Book World called a "delectable comedy of bad manners . . . infused with a rare creative exuberance". From the author of the award-winning Changing Places.
- Grand Central Publishing
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
What People are Saying About This
Meet the Author
David Lodge is the author of twelve novels and a novella, including the Booker Prize finalists Small World and Nice Work. He is also the author of many works of literary criticism, including The Art of Fiction and Consciousness and the Novel.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
See all customer reviews
Small World makes light of a terribly important social phenomenon. On the other hand, the book was published in 1984, before academia had become the place it is now. The novel is also slow by American standards, taking its time with each scene, including scenes that make the reader wonder why the scenes are there at all. The most serious problem from a social point of view is that academia now is not the place it was twenty years ago. For a current fictional picture of academia and the story of how it got that way, get The Rape of Alma Mater. What has happened in America has also happened in the U.K, as Small World makes clear. These people are networking on an international scale. Perhaps, Lodge thought these literary ideas were so silly they would blow over in a short time and he could laugh them out of existence. ('Then, what's it all for?!') But the grim-faced neoMarxists of the present universities have no sense of humor and are not about to be laughed out of their entrenched positions of power. The situation is now very serious. But read this book if you like. Then, however, get the novel Alma Mater mentioned above and find out what it's like now.
The world of academia is vast but becomes like any other......wide at the bottom....smaller toward the top of the food chain.
I read it first, before two others and it's still the greatest. But I want to read them all now. Small World is about a very LIKABLE young English prof (of course), and Phillip Swallow and Morris Zapp from 'Changing Places' as well, about whom I can't say the same.