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

The Gift by Lewis Hyde
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's review
Apr 29, 2009

it was ok

While Hyde has given his readers the gift of a lens through which to view artistic endeavors, this could have been done in about 50 pages - not 385. This book reminded me of a typical college freshman essay: I want to write about everything! And therefore, nothing is really achieved. While the gift metaphor is interesting, it's too vague to help in any but the most theoretical way. This could have been a tight essay, a literary work (like a novel or short story) or a scholarly work on the anthropological history of gift giving, or even a series of biographies of writers. Since Hyde attempts all of these things, he achieves none well. But, if it took him 385 pages to discover that HIS true gift is as an artistic coop organizer, God Bless Him. The world has plenty of writers far more talented than Hyde, but very few people with the talent to help them write.
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Reading Progress

April 29, 2009 – Shelved
Started Reading
May 8, 2009 – Finished Reading

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