"The Gift is surely the most misunderstood work in the history of anthropology. Marcel Mauss is not entirely without blame for this. It is a work of notoriously scattershot brilliance; but, as a result, the essay has become a kind of screen for the projection of every sort of fantasy. Guyer’s excellent new edition will go a long way towards finally straightening matters out. There are endless riches here. But finally they are also in a form where we can see exactly what we’re being given."
(David Graeber, author of Debt: The First 5,000 Years)
"The Gift is like a river that carries an immense mass of facts set in motion by Mauss’ vision. Guyer proves to be a skilled guide in navigating its perilous currents by giving us a nuanced translation that explores the text’s most secluded coves."
(Maurice Godelier, author of The Enigma of the Gift)
"Marcel Mauss wrote The Gift to refute the contrast between free gifts and self-interested markets. Yet, the opposition that he attacked—gift economy versus market economy—is often attributed to Mauss himself. Previous English translations were taken out of their historical context. Guyer has restored that context and has made the sociological argument more explicit. This long overdue publication will transform the essay’s reception, and stands to correct a text whose fame far surpasses most readers’ grasp of its meaning."
(Keith Hart, author of The Memory Bank: Money in an Unequal World)
"Not only is Guyer extremely attentive to the wealth of connotations stirred by every word, in every language; she is also attuned to understanding Mauss’ essay in the context in which it was written. This gives the reader the sense that Mauss is finally grasped fully—as an inexhaustible source of inspiration."
(Alain Caillé, author of The World of the Gift (with J. Godbout) and editor of Revue du MAUSS)