A LIFE OF RIOT And Other Stories by Judith Johnson Sherwin

A LIFE OF RIOT And Other Stories

Email this review


Eleven short stories introduce bizarre characters and surrealistic situations resisting if not subverting the inroads of technocracy. In the ""Machinery of Response,"" an overworked husband comes home to his wife who happens to be a telephone, and since she will not listen to his problems with the Health Department and the Communications Industry, he turns himself into a turnstile, better than ""being a human thing at the mercy of crowds that have to be served."" The housewife in ""A Growing Economy"" refuses to be the consumer her husband wants and lives in terror of the day he will discover her corns in the couch. ""The Fourth Annual Greater New York Revolving Door Crisis"" is instigated by a group called SNT, protesting from Macy's lo Lincoln Center, by ""performing arts they never dreamed of,"" including press interviews cum fornication. ""These Actions Shall Be Held Proof"" are those of an American couple in Europe--the husband never wants anything, he only wants to buy it; and the wife has mastered a ""technique of feeling"" that allows her to cry at any passing funeral while eating boxes of chocolate. The title story is the accumulation of one man's eccentric aliases created to ""clothe the disorder, the disaster that is mankind."" Miss Sherwin's artful anomie cuts through absurdities, existing and self-made, lo deliver a confidently styled statement of lost humanity. Several of these have had little magazine appearance.

Pub Date: May 1st, 1970
Publisher: Atheneum