In an upside-down Lolita, Umberto Umberto pursues a granny with ‘whitely
lascivious locks’. Professor Anouk Ooma of Prince Joseph’s Land University
addresses his colleagues on recent archaeological findings that shed light
on the poetry of Italy before the Explosion. Columbus’s landing in the New
World is covered by television reporters, commentators and guest experts.
We are permitted to see in-house publisher’s readers’ reports, most of them
unfavourable, on such submissions as The Odyssey, Don Quixote, Kant’s
Critique of Pure Reason, and the Five Books of Moses; and we hear a
diatribe, in ancient Greece, against the vulgarity of such upstarts as
Herodotus, Thucydides and Plato. ‘For sheer exuberant good humour, nothing
could surpass Misreadings, a collection of parodies and squibs that began
appearing in the 1950s and 1960s, but whose panache has not faded one bit’
Marina Warner, Books of the Year, Independent on Sunday ‘Made up of
vintage, good-humoured games – parodies of think-pieces, spoof essays and
carnival pranks’ Lorna Sage, Books of the Year, Observer

Umberto Eco—Misreadings

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