3.88 (753 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Paperback

Currently unavailable

Add to wishlist

AbeBooks may have this title (opens in new window).

Try AbeBooks

Product details

  • Paperback | 96 pages
  • 109.22 x 177.8 x 7.62mm | 80g
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • New edition
  • 0140033505
  • 9780140033502

Review Text

The publisher makes no mistake in calling these pieces departures, but underestimates the degree when he characterizes them as "dialogue-scenarios that can be read as poems or as brief plays." The author himself, after suggesting "knots, tangles, rankles, impasses, disjunctions, whirligogs, binds," modestly adopts the label "webs of maya"; and though the Hindu reference stopped us cold for a minute, later on it came to seem perfectly apt. Each fankle-or-whatever is a little study in the dynamics of relationship, reduced very nearly to abstract patterns of emotional logic (or illogic). Given their tail-in-teeth circularity and hypnotic repetition of basic words (want, distort, devour, stupid, happy, greedy, cruel, can, can't), they are actually more like a kind of verbal mandala. A sample: "The more Jill feels Jack is mean/ to feel she is mean to feel he is greedy to feel she is mean/ the more Jack feels Jill is mean/ to feel/ Jack is mean/ to feel she is mean/ to feel he is greedy/ to feel she is mean. . . . " We know who Jack and Jill are and what they are up to; but in order even to recognize what we know, in this form, we have to look much longer and harder than we would bother to do if we knew from the start what we were looking at: forced meditation. The last few, assuming we've gotten the drift, come right out with some pure propositions: "All distinctions are mind, by mind, in mind, of mind/ No distinctions no mind to distinguish." "I have thought up others," Laing says, but there's no hurry. If you can think about these at all, you can do it indefinitely. (Kirkus Reviews)show more

Rating details

753 ratings
3.88 out of 5 stars
5 32% (241)
4 37% (278)
3 22% (165)
2 6% (48)
1 3% (21)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X