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Caveat emptor: these witty, ironic, and observant essays by Wallace Shawn are brought to audio in a shoddy production with such poor sound quality that listeners may justifiably demand their money back. The microphone skips in and out so that parts of Shawn's narration are almost completely lost. In a reproduction of the 2004 interview that Shawn conducted with MIT linguist Noam Chomsky, the volume modulation varies so widely in the interview's second half that listening becomes irritating and difficult. (And the narration itself is confusing: Shawn plays Chomsky while Brian Jones plays Shawn, a role reversal that will sound bizarre to listeners who have already spent more than an hour with Shawn reading as himself.) Advice to Shawn's many fans: buy the hardcover of these worthy essays or seek out the pieces online; free versions of some are available on various Web sites or even on youtube.com. A Haymarket hardcover.
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Now here is a man who can write. Not only the plays, and My Dinner with Andre, but also some good essays. To the point and with good points.Published 9 months ago by Roland
Got this on a whim - one of those who loved "My Dinner With Andre" and more recently, "Vanya on 42nd Street. Read morePublished 15 months ago by A. Pak
While these are all fairly short essays, there's not a wasted word in them. Wallace Shawn has plenty to say, which he does in what at first seems to be an almost faux naif style --... Read morePublished on July 29, 2012 by William Timothy Lukeman
The moment most useful in this book is the flicker of self-awareness when Shawn identifies himself as a protected bourgeois. Read morePublished on July 13, 2011 by Interrobang
Shawn's essays are designed to make the reader question his own assumptions. They are to the point and honest observations by an author who thinks well ahead of the herd.Published on May 21, 2011 by Sims McCutchan
Wallace Shawn, who plays ubiquitous characters in films, is a writer that stands alone in the literary and art world. Read morePublished on March 4, 2011 by Patrick R. Saunders
Shawn's essays are a spatter of thoroughly enjoyable commentaries and completely generalized drivel. Read morePublished on October 2, 2010 by Wood_Is_Good
In a recent reading by Wallace Shawn, he admitted outright that he is not the most politically informed or socially-entrenched person out there. Read morePublished on July 5, 2010 by HalfAndHalf
I was looking forward to this being amusing and original. Instead within the first ten pages he suggests that he a man of many talents, a renaissance man, that his deep well of... Read morePublished on November 7, 2009 by Seneca