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Writers and Missionaries by Adam Shatz
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Writers and Missionaries

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Writers and Missionaries by Adam Shatz
Hardcover $34.95
May 09, 2023 | ISBN 9781804290590

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  • May 09, 2023 | ISBN 9781804290590

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“What strikes the reader immediately is Adam Shatz’s range, that of his subjects and that of his learning. It tells us that these essays come from a very free and strong mind. His independence of spirit is part of the intellectual tradition of the wonderfully written work that beguiles us into contemplation, further thought. We follow his questions into the past and return with better understandings of the present. A gifted soul for our times.”
—Darryl Pinckney

“Astounding. The range, strength and intricate connectedness of these essays by Adam Shatz offers great intellectual nourishment for the reader, and his patient engagement with the work and life of the authors he follows to illustrate his ideas is staggering. What pleasure it was to read his thoughtful essays when they were first published, and what a great boost and singular satisfaction to read them altogether in this superb book.”
—Raja Shehadeh, author of We Could Have Been Friends, My Father and I: A Palestinian Memoir

“For over two decades, Adam Shatz has re-animated the old Anglo-American model of the man of letters, bringing a cosmopolitan flair and moral urgency to de-politicised realms of literary criticism and intellectual journalism. His refusal of conventional pieties is consistently bracing; these selected essays brilliantly showcase his broad and extraordinarily cohesive sensibility.”
—Pankaj Mishra

“This carefully-orchestrated compendium of Adam Shatz’s essays makes a gem of a book. A keen ear and attentive eye have infused his eloquent writing with humane insight and a refined political sensibility.”
—Paul Gilroy

“The art of literary criticism lies in combining, in a condensed form, the beauty of style and the sharpness of thought. The essays gathered in Writers and Missionaries are a model of the genre. They accomplish the difficult task of balancing political commitment with critical distance, a passion for texts with an analytical gaze. They sketch an intellectual landscape made of literary, philosophical, and filmic productions through the prism of colonialism and race, war and antisemitism, emigration and exile, and humanism and structuralism. Adam Shatz’s approach to French culture as a crossroads is unconventional and refreshing. This is the art of essay at its best, and a true pleasure for readers.”
—Enzo Traverso, Author of Revolution: An Intellectual History

“Reminiscent of an interview, Shatz sets up his opening question, sits back, and simply lets his subjects talk. At its heart [Writers and Missionaries] is an extended exercise in listening.”
—George Adams, Oxford Review of Books

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