Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Buy Used
+ $3.99 shipping
Used: Good | Details
Sold by AZ_Fulfillment
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: [Solid Condition Paperback. Cover may have wear. May contain writing/markings. May be ex-library copy. Any CD/DVD may have been removed by previous user. Expedited Shipping Available]
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

Not-Knowing: The Essays and Interviews Paperback

2.8 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

See all 5 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
New from Used from
$73.87 $6.46
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

The Amazon Book Review
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
click to open popover

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

In his early essay "After Joyce" (1964), the first title in this nonfiction omnibus, Barthelme, America's preeminent postmodern practitioner, made a strong argument for the literary work "as an object in the world rather than a commentary upon the world." The writer, "betrayed by outmoded forms," may find in play "one of the great possibilities of art." A whole generation of writers obliged, among them Gass, Elkin, Hawkes, Coover, Gaddis, and Pynchon. In one of his last essays, "Not-Knowing" (published not long before his death in 1989, at age 58), Barthelme, having shaken off that "rhetoric of the time," admits that much of contemporary criticism robs the work of its mystery, which indeed "exists." These two essays, offered back to back, buoy this collection, which includes later interviews that demonstrate for writing students his methods, influences, etc. Much of Barthelme's New Yorker commentary (on art, politics, living in Greenwich Village) seems dated now. Important for literature collections and writing programs.?Amy Boaz, "Library Journal"
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

From Booklist

"Art is not difficult because it wishes to be difficult, but because it wishes to be art," wrote Barthelme in the title essay of this collection. That essay, a meditation on art as a necessary process of "not knowing," could be called a full-fledged aesthetic, a major statement, or perhaps even a synopsis of Barthelme's writing process and hopes for his art. But one could just as easily say that it is simply Barthelme playfully pondering and calling into question how we see the world. By exploring and incorporating the details of daily life and news, Barthelme produced innovative essays, hilarious commentaries on society, and astute reviews of art, literature, and film. Not-Knowing is a posthumous gift, and Kim Herzinger, who studied and carefully flushed out these writings from many sources, has given the reader a chance to "hear" Barthelme through interview and discussion-panel form. While this collection provides an opportunity to read Barthelme's previously unpublished work, it also encourages new generations of writers and readers to encounter Barthelme's wit, originality, sensitivity, and skill for the first time. His diversity of subject matter and oddities of expression and the marvelous spin he put on ordinary life all add to the overall impression that Barthelme's death left a wide gap in our contemporary writing, one that is not likely to be filled anytime soon. Janet St. John --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

New York Times best sellers
Browse the New York Times best sellers in popular categories like Fiction, Nonfiction, Picture Books and more. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Counterpoint
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0058M99ZW
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.9 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,546,385 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

on February 6, 2008
Format: Hardcover
0Comment| 16 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on May 27, 2016
Format: Hardcover|Verified Purchase
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 10, 2012
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on July 26, 2014
Format: Paperback
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse