Waiting for the Barbarians: Essays from the Classics to P... and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Qty:1
  • List Price: $24.95
  • Save: $6.52 (26%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 7 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
Waiting for the Barbarian... has been added to your Cart
+ $3.99 shipping
Used: Very Good | Details
Sold by hippo_books
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: Very Good: Cover and pages how some wear from reading and storage.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Waiting for the Barbarians: Essays from the Classics to Pop Culture (New York Review Collections) Hardcover – October 16, 2012


See all 3 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$18.43
$7.90 $2.94

Putting Modernism Together by Daniel Albright
Putting Modernism Together by Daniel Albright
In Putting Modernism Together, the author argues human culture can best be understood as a growth-pattern or ramifying of artistic, intellectual, and political action. Going beyond merely explaining how the artists in these genres achieved their peculiar effects, he presents challenging new analyses of telling craft details which help students and scholars come to know more fully this bold age of aesthetic extremism. Learn more | See similar books
$18.43 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Only 7 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

Waiting for the Barbarians: Essays from the Classics to Pop Culture (New York Review Collections) + How Beautiful It Is And How Easily It Can Be Broken: Essays + The Lost: The Search for Six of Six Million (P.S.)
Price for all three: $44.89

Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews

From Bookforum

The most compelling reviews in Daniel Mendelsohn's very good new collection of them, Waiting for the Barbarians, are decidedly mixed. Five-thousand-word love letters require a kind of wild passion that seems foreign to Mendelsohn's coolly intelligent prose. Give him a flaw to diagnose, on the other hand, and Mendelsohn will solve it with Sherlockian elan. Mixed reviews... become intellectual detective stories, and Mendelsohn provides illuminating, elegant solutions. —David Haglund

Review

"Mendelsohn is a deep thinker with insightful charm.  All fans of intelligent thought on popular culture will appreciate his commentary." —Library Journal

"Mendelsohn’s work is absolutely vital in both senses of the word—it breaths with an exciting intelligence often absent in similar but stodgier writing, and it should be required reading for anyone interested in dissecting culture, or who simply find themselves thinking about the complex flaws of an almost-good movie a week after leaving the cinema. In the book, his scope includes both the high- and middlebrow….Taken together, the collection offers a sort of defense of the modern age of culture. If a true-blue classicist can engage with the current zeitgeist using the full weight of his intellect and without an iota of demoralization, than the rest of us have no excuse." —Nicholas Mancusi, The Daily Beast

"Even more than his earlier books about literature and culture, it displays his characteristic strengths of style and judgment and his distinctive and engaging voice. As always, he is surprising yet convincing when he praises what practically everyone else condemns, or sees through the pretensions and confusions of books and dramas that everyone else admires." —Edward Mendelson, The New York Review of Books

"Waiting for the Barbarians adds up to more than the sum of its parts, evidencing an impressive range, depth and nobility of mind…. Mendelsohn is a trained classics scholar, from which much of his intellectual authority still derives: witness his brilliantly illuminating, lucid essays on Homer, Sappho, Herodotus and Horace. He writes about pop culture with equal enthusiasm." —Phillip Lopate, San Francisco Chronicle

"Waiting for the Barbarians, his latest collection of essays and reviews, is full of prose in praise of Horace, of Sappho, of Homer, and of the ghosts of all the above across all of popular culture. It makes it clear he is now, and has been for some time, the finest critic alive." —John Freeman, Toronto Star

“Another top-notch collection of previously published criticism from Mendelsohn." —Kirkus Reviews

"[Mendelsohn] is a brilliant storyteller, influenced by the Greek masters he so admires…" —The Times of London

"A joy from start to finish…a wonderfully eclectic set of musings on the state of contemporary culture and the enduring richness of classical literature." —Publishers Weekly

"A classicist by training and a critic by trade, he begins with a challenging subject and gloriously complicates it by drawing on his erudition, acumen, and passion for precision and bedrock truth….These are works of brilliant and soulful criticism." —Booklist

"Mendelsohn…is a gifted and entertaining writer. His prose is gorgeous and lyrical and his subjects are smartly considered and freshly revealed." —Vanity Fair
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Series: New York Review Collections
  • Hardcover: 440 pages
  • Publisher: New York Review Books; First Edition edition (October 16, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590176073
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590176078
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1.2 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #594,788 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Daniel Mendelsohn, an award-winning author, critic, and translator, is a frequent contributor to The New Yorker and the New York Review of Books. Born on Long Island, he began a career in journalism in New York City in the early 1990s while completing his Ph.D. in Classics at Princeton. Since then, his articles, essays, reviews and translations have appeared frequently in numerous national publications, including The New York Times, Esquire, Newsweek, The Paris Review, and Travel + Leisure, where he is a contributing editor. From 2000 until 2002, he was the weekly book critic for New York magazine, for which he won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Excellence in Criticism.

His books include a memoir, "The Elusive Embrace" (1999), a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year; the international bestseller "The Lost: A Search for Six of Six Million" (2006), which won the National Book Critics Circle Award, the National Jewish Book Award, the Salon Book Award, and many other honors in the US and abroad, including the Prix Médicis in France; two collection of his essays and criticism, "How Beautiful It Is and How Easily It Can Be Broken" (2008), a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year, and "Waiting for the Barbarians: Essays from the Classics to Pop Culture" (2012); and an acclaimed two-volume translation, with Introduction and Commentary, of the Complete Poems of the Alexandrian Greek poet Constantine Cavafy (2009), also a Publisher Weekly Best Book of the Year, which was published in 2012 as a single-volume paperback.

Daniel Mendelsohn was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2012; he is also a member of the American Philosophical Society. Other honors include a Guggenheim Fellowship and the George Jean Nathan Prize for Dramatic Criticism. A longtime resident of New York City, he teaches literature at Bard College.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By T. J. Monika on December 27, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Daniel Mendelsohn's choice of title in this collection of essays is not meant to convey a sense of impending doom as is usually associated with the phrase "waiting for the barbarians." Rather, he wants to suggest its meaning in C.P. Cavafy's original: The barbarians are awaited with a sense of hope; they offer welcome change and the possibility of renewal.

"Why this sudden restlessness, this confusion?
(How serious people's faces have become.)
Why are the streets and squares emptying so rapidly, everyone going home so lost in thought?

- Because night has fallen and the barbarians have not come.
And some who have just returned from the border say there are no barbarians any longer.

And now, what's going to happen to us without barbarians?
They were, those people, a kind of solution."

(You can read the full text here: [...])

Thus, the essays in this collection "consider the ways in which the present, and especially popular culture, has wrestled ... with the past." (p. xi)

The second theme found in these essays is what Mendelsohn calls the "reality problem": The extraordinary blurring between reality and artifice, made all too possible by the latest technology, has bled beyond just our entertainments to affect how we think about and conduct our lives.

He divides the book into four sections: "Spectacles," which reprints the type of reviews that initially endeared me to him - looking at popular culture through the lens of our past; "Classica," which focuses on reinterpretations of the Classical canon; "Creative Writing," which deals with more modern works of fiction; and "Private Lives," which considers how a private life ends up represented on the printed page.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. Corner on March 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Wonderful collection of essays. Mendelsohn is equal parts thoughtful, hilarious, and poignant. Would recommend to anyone who has an interest in finding new ways to look at pop culture and, more generally, the world.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Priscilla Ciccariello on January 31, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I enjoy Mendelsohn's tone and scholarship. The information provided is meticulous and builds with author's amazing store of knowledge and experience. Thoroughly relevant, interesting, and relevant.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mariel Morison on April 18, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have this by the bed and read an essay almost every night. Interesting, erudite, creative. I highly recommend it.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Page Turner on February 17, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Mendelsohn writes insightfully and intelligently from a deeply learned perspective. Too frequently pop culture analysts treat their subjects from the perspective of fans or else their perspective lacks depth. Mendelsohn brings the depth of the classics as background for his examinations. The best thing I can say is that I always learned something, and I was equally interested in essays about writers I was previously unfamiliar with.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Suzanne Kuffler on June 23, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I found this book stimulating and imaginative giving a fresh take on
contemporary events with links to Greek history. I liked this vision of
continuity.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
Waiting for the Barbarians: Essays from the Classics to Pop Culture (New York Review Collections)
This item: Waiting for the Barbarians: Essays from the Classics to Pop Culture (New York Review Collections)
Price: $18.43
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com