Troubled by the lack of substance in contemporary life, Richard Todd suspects that much of what we experience is false. In this unique pursuit of the "genuine," Todd examines his search for authenticity in places and objects, in politics and ideas, and in ourselves, and recounts his efforts to understand the desire to be a real person in a real world.
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Sold by:||Penguin Group|
|File size:||268 KB|
|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
What People are Saying About This
"There is a sweet memoir embedded in this book of cultural criticism, into which Mr. Todd has deftly wrangled the whole gang, from Jean Baudrillard to Lionel Trilling."
-The New York Times
"An arch and eloquent meditation."
-O, the Oprah magazine
"Dazzling, beautifully crafted...A small masterpiece- and 'small' only because of its brevity, not its scope."
"Provocative and oddly comforting...Refreshing."
-The Arizona Republic
"A fully realized, brave, and movingly honest memoir...[Todd] makes a figure in which to contemplate ourselves."
"A splendid book, brimming with wit and original insights...Most pertinent to the way we live now."
-Ward Just, author of Forgetfulness
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Richard Todd's interview on NPR was the reason I bought his book, and I am glad I did. This extended meditation on identity will make many of us uncomfortable. Todd is like the singer in the song who is 'killing us softly' with his amazingly apt observations. Whether we like it or not, much of who we are is shaped by the power of mass communication, and Todd will make you squirm as you realize that yes, others hate Disney World, and we would like to feel we are the only ones touring little towns in Italy. Oddly missing in his reflection, however, is a discussion of sports and steroids (Are we seeing authentic athletic performance) and computer graphics in modern film (the irony of finding a fake background, for example, while watching celluloid in a darkened room). Overall, Todd joins the discussion that begins The Great Gatsby when he repeats the question, 'Is personality (merely) a series of successful gestures?' This book is an excellent contribution to the discussion of truth and identity.
Essays on our relationships to "things"....including experiences as well as material objects. Interesting observations with writing similar to Wendell Berry's essays.
Mr. Todd's perspective on the authenticity of objects (as it relates to antiques) drew me in. His views on everything else kept me riveted. My hardcopy of the book is bursting with post-its and filled with penciled comments. It's a cultural bible for our times.
Strange, how unhappy a soul this author seems. If there is anything joyful in this book, I'm afraid I really didn't see it.