From the October, 2001 issue of Touchstone
The Ghost in My Machine by Phillip E. Johnson

The Ghost in My Machine

David Lodge has been one of my favorite authors since I read his brilliant satires of academic life, Changing Places and Small World. His new novel, Thinks . . . , retains the bawdy humor and satiric range of these earlier works. Professor Ralph Messenger, a paradigmatic scientific reductionist and lifelong philanderer, has a romance with a lady novelist, carried on—or expressed—mainly in the parallel journals that they keep.

Messenger insists that the only reality is one that can be captured in the objective, third-person manner of scientific explanation. Helen, the novelist, exists in the world of first-person narrative. After all, she is a novelist, as is David . . .


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