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ONCE AGAIN FOR THUCYDIDES by Peter Handke

ONCE AGAIN FOR THUCYDIDES

By Peter Handke

Pub Date: Sept. 29th, 1998
ISBN: 0-8112-1388-9
Publisher: New Directions

Once Again For Thucydides ($18.95; Sept. 29; 96 pp.; 0-8112-1388-9): Ten very slightly fictionalized (and beautifully translated) essays gathering together observations made during their narrator’s (and author’s) travels through Europe and the Orient in the late 1980s. We’re offered beguiling glimpses of caterpillars, an escaped parakeet, glowworms in Italy, and “sheet lightning” over Yugoslavia; meditations on “Several Incidents of Snowfall in Japan” and the expertise (if not art) of “The Shoeshine Man of Split”—all comprising an inchoate yet affecting portrait of the artist as an observer to whose mill even the commonest objects and occurrences are welcome grist. A very pleasing little book, which shows a refreshingly different side of a writer often pigeonholed as an austere intellectual.