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    How to Talk About Books You Haven't Read (Hardback) By (author) Pierre Bayard

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    DescriptionThe runaway French bestseller hailed by the "New York Times" as "a survivor's guide to life in the chattering classes." If civilized people are expected to have read all important works of literature, and thousands more books are published every year, what are we supposed to do in those awkward social situations in which we're forced to talk about books we haven't read? In this delightfully witty, provocative book, a huge hit in France that has drawn attention from critics around the world, literature professor and psychoanalyst Pierre Bayard argues that it's actually more important to know a book's role in our collective library than its details. Using examples from such writers as Graham Greene, Oscar Wilde, Montaigne, and Umberto Eco, and even the movie "Groundhog Day," he describes the many varieties of "non-reading" and the horribly sticky social situations that might confront us, and then offers his advice on what to do. Practical, funny, and thought-provoking, "How to Talk About Books You Haven't Read" is in the end a love letter to books, offering a whole new perspective on how we read and absorb them. It's the book that readers everywhere will be talking about--and despite themselves, reading--this holiday season.

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  • Full bibliographic data for How to Talk About Books You Haven't Read

    How to Talk About Books You Haven't Read
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Pierre Bayard
    Physical properties
    Format: Hardback
    Number of pages: 185
    Width: 130 mm
    Height: 191 mm
    Thickness: 23 mm
    Weight: 318 g
    ISBN 13: 9781596914698
    ISBN 10: 1596914696

    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: T3.7
    B&T Merchandise Category: GEN
    B&T Book Type: NF
    BIC E4L: LIT
    LC subject heading:
    DC21: 809
    B&T Modifier: Region of Publication: 01
    BIC subject category V2: DSB, WH
    B&T Modifier: Academic Level: 05
    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 11800
    BISAC V2.8: LIT007000
    Ingram Subject Code: LC
    Libri: I-LC
    BISAC V2.8: LIT000000
    DC22: 809
    LC subject heading:
    B&T General Subject: 495
    LC subject heading:
    Abridged Dewey: 809
    LC subject heading:
    B&T Approval Code: A28400000
    B&T Modifier: Subject Development: 88
    LC subject heading:
    LC classification: PN45 .B34413 2007
    Thema V1.0: DS
    Edition statement
    Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
    Imprint name
    Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
    Publication date
    30 October 2007
    Publication City/Country
    New York, NY
    Author Information
    Pierre Bayard is a professor of French literature at the University of Paris VIII and a psychoanalyst. He is the author of "Who Killed Roger Ackroyd?"and of many other books. Jeffrey Mehlman is a professor of French at Boston University and the author of a number of books, including "Emigre New York. "He has translated works by Derrida, Lacan, Blanchot, and other authors. "
    Review quote
    Praise for "How to Talk About Books You Havent Read" "I probably shouldn't bring any of this up, but Mr. Bayard holds that one of the best reasons for reading a book is that it allows you to talk about yourself. H"ow to Talk About Books You Haven't Read" is an amusing disquisition on what is required to establish cultural literacy in a comfortable way. Lightly laced with irony, the book nonetheless raises such serious questions as: What are our true motives for reading? Is there an objective way to read a book? What do we retain from the books we've read?"--Joseph Epstein, "Wall Street Journal" "Witty and charming and often fun."--Sam Anderson, "New York"" Magazine" "I read and adored Pierre Bayard's book. It's funny, smart, and so true--a wonderful combination of slick French philosophizing and tongue-in-cheek wit, and an honest appraisal of what it means, or doesn't mean, to read."--Clare Messud, author of "The Emperor's Children ""It may well be that too many books are published, but by good fortune, not all must be read...A survivor's guide to life in the chattering classes...evidently much in need."--"New York Times" "In this work of inspired nonsense -- which nevertheless evokes our very real sense of insecurity about the gaps in our cultural knowledge -- reading is not only superfluous, it is meaningless. Our need to appear well-read is all."--Sarah Gold, "Chicago Tribune""In this hilarious and elaborate spoof, Bayard proves once again that being almost ridiculously erudite and screamingly funny are by no means mutually exclusive." --"Booklist" "Brilliant...A witty and useful piece of literary sociology, designed to bring lasting peace of mind to the scrupulous souls who grow anxious whenever the book-talk around them becomes too specific."--"London"" Review of Books" "With rare humor, Bayard liberally rethinks the social use [of literature] and the position of the reader...Read or skim "How to Talk About Books You Haven't Read". Or simply listen to