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The Wisdom of Donkeys


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About the Author

Andy Merrifield is an independent scholar and author of eleven books and numerous articles, essays and reviews in The Nation, Harper's Magazine, New Left Review, Adbusters, Brooklyn Rail, Radical Philosophy and Dissent. He has spent decades teaching and writing about urbanism, social theory and literature, both inside and outside of a conventional university setting. He has also published three intellectual biographies on Henri Lefebvre, Guy Debord, and John Berger. He is a regular speaker at scholarly, literary and political events on and off-campus. Over the years, he has led a somewhat nomadic existence, residing in the UK, the US, France and Brazil.


It is too seldom that the Spiritual Living section of LJ has an opportunity to read and review a real love story, but this is such a book, the affecting and eloquent account of a man and a chocolate-colored donkey named Gribouille. Merrifield, author of important biocritical studies of Henri Lefebvre and Guy Debord, as well as Metromarxism: A Marxist Tale of the City, tells the tale of his wander through the Haute-Avergne in southern France, learning the ways of his patient, strong, and stubborn donkey companion, who gradually shows him that "real happiness comes in unforeseen places, through surprising twists and turns, through honesty." Highly recommended. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

"Merrifield makes us feel the heat and dust of the road as well as the gentle breath of Gribouille on his shoulder as they walk. Whatever the ills of this world, it somehow begins to seem credible that a donkey can wash them away." --Christian Science Monitor"Unless you read Andy Merrifield, you might never appreciate how interested you could be in donkeys...I cannot imagine a more charming, informative or restful book." --Jim Crace"Searching for silence after a life of noise, he hears rain, birds, insects, church bells, wind and owls -- some of these for the first time. 'I can't help thinking, ' he notes at the end of his trip, 'that daydreams make us, that our little life is rounded with reverie rather than sleep.'" --Los Angeles Times"An absolutely charming, lovely, and loving book." --Jeffrey Masson"It is too seldom that the Spiritual Living section of LJ has an opportunity to read and review a real love story, but this is such a book...Highly recommended." --Library Journal

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