Eagleton vs Spivak

November 26, 1999

Is it necessary to crank up Terry Eagleton's unpleasant animosity towards Gayatri Spivak ("More craic, less Spivak", THES, November 19)? The wonderful mistake in the contents page announcing that Eagleton is reviewing a book by "Slavoj Spivak" makes it look as if the bee in his bonnet has got into yours too.

Eagleton used to be interesting about work he disagreed with, but his obsession with postmodernism is simply a rant. "Phoney" and "devious" indeed. Does he read these books or just throw them across the room? In throwing the "apolitical" stone at Spivak, he has simply displayed his ignorance.

And has he not noticed the proverbial glass walls around him? It is a bit rich to complain about the air miles of others when you go to work by plane.

Mich le Barrett Queen Mary and Westfield College London

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