Nathan Oates's Reviews > The Gift: Creativity and the Artist in the Modern World

The Gift by Lewis Hyde
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's review
Dec 10, 08

it was amazing
Read in December, 2008

As a critique of capitalism (in defense of the artist), this is a moving, often brilliant book. The blurbs on the front and back attest that Hyde's expansive intelligence is just the kind writers and artists hope to have on their side. The writing is often exhilarating, but Hyde seems (and admits to this in the introduction) determined to cast his criticism in an optimistic light, which, in various ways, weakens his argument. I'm not sure if this is because I'm so accustomed to serious, rigorous thought embracing (or at least verring into) pessimism, or if it's because, in the end, the assertion of the self Hyde suggests strikes me as somewhat conservative. Nevertheless, a beautiful and exciting book (while reading it I blabbed endlessly about the ideas to Amy).

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