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John Erskine
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The Private Life of Helen of Troy

3.29 of 5 stars 3.29  ·  rating details  ·  48 ratings  ·  7 reviews
John Erskine (10/5/1879–6/2/1951) was an educator & author, born in New York City & raised in Weehawken, NJ. He graduated from Columbia University (A.M., '01; Ph.D., '03). He was employed at Columbia & Amherst. He instituted Columbia College's General Honors Course, a 2-year undergraduate seminar that would later help inspire "Masterworks of Western Literature, ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published December 1st 1981 by Darby Books (first published 1925)
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Tad Richards
Moving from my parents' library to my grandparents' -- this one has my grandmother's name, Charis Fairbanks, 1926, on the flyleaf. John Erskine was a noted scholar - he created the Great Books program at Columbia University -- and a popular novelist in his day, pretty much forgotten today -- I'd say undeservedly. The Private Life of Helen of Troy is a wonderfully readable novel of ideas. Erskine is erudite but his style is not at all donnish. It's talky -- actually, it's all talk -- but the talk ...more
Considering that "The Private Life of Helen of Troy" was written by John Erskine, one of the pioneers of the Great Books movement in the 1930s, I really thought that I would enjoy this novel more. I must say that it is a disappointment.

The novel is set in Sparta after Helen of Troy returns to the city with her husband Menelaus after literally causing the Trojan War. As Helen was for all intents and purposes a war trophy at this point, one would think that the rest of her life would have been spe
Erik Graff
May 27, 2014 Erik Graff rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Erskine fans
Recommended to Erik by: no one
Shelves: literature
I found this cloth edition at a little bookstore in Three Oaks, Michigan the summer Martin, my younger brother and I were living in a little old cottage beside Lake Michigan--a summer when Martin and I, having no tv, tape-player or phonograph, did a whole lot of reading. The bookstore, no longer there, was located in what had been the town's railroad station back in the days when trains still carried people from town to town. The book was attractive not because of it author, I'd never heard of h ...more
L.  (I've Stopped Counting)
Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah

There, you've read it.
Ridiculous dialogue. Reads more like a play than a novel, a very boring one with absolutely no stage action.
One can't beat the dialogue and connections between men and women in this rendition.
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John Erskine (October 5, 1879 – June 2, 1951) was an American educator and author, pianist and composer. He was first an English professor at Amherst College from 1903 to 1909, followed by Columbia University from 1909 and 1937, during his tenure he formulated the General Honors Course, which later founded the influential Great Books movement. He published over 100 books, novel, criticism, essays ...more
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