Lenin, he preaches the “totalndemocratic equality” of everynperson (baby rapers included),nprophesies that “revolution hasnto be the main trend in the worldntoday,” and champions “what’snbest for all the world’s peoples,nnot just for a privileged few.”nNot surprisingly, he doesn’tn’Toiock” communism because hencannot “see how I could do anynworse under communism thannI’m doin’ here under capitalism.”nThough one doubts that Mr.nHeard would learn enough fromnany experience to attain then6ith, insight, and moral stature ofnSolzhenitsyn, perhaps a year orntwo building communist powernplants in Siberia by day and sleepingnin communist straw by nightnwould at least release him fromnthe self-imposed imprisonmentnof pernicious ideology. ( BC ) DnProlitkritnTerry Eagleton: LiterarynTheory: An Introduction; universitynof Minnesota Press; Minneapolis.nTo put Mr. Eagleton in thenproper Ught, one might borrowna quotation from his own WalternBenjamin; or, Towards a RevolutionarynCriticism (1981):nLet us review some of thennames of the major Marxistnaestheticians of the centurynto date: Lukacs, Goldmann,nSartre, Caudwell, Adomo,nMarcusc, Delia Voipe, Macherey,nJameson, E^eton.n32inChronicles of CulturenHe undoubtedly includes himselfnbecause he is the author ofnstudies including Marxism andnLiterary Criticism (1976), Criticismnand Ideology {1976), andnWe Rape of Clarissa- WritingnSexuality and Class Struggle innSamuel Richardson (1982; seenChronicles of Culture Novembern1983, pp. 4l-42).Literary7heory:nAn Introduction has no obviousntrappings of Marxism in its tide.nIn the preface Mr. Eagletonnquietly states, “This book setsnout to provide a reasonably comprehensivenaccount of modemnliterary theory for those withnlittie or no previous knowledgenof the topic.” That neutral statementnseems innocent enough.nGiven the fact that the “those”nto whom he refers are undoubt-‘nedly students and teachers—fornwho else would concern themselvesnwith the subject?—thenbook must have been designednand formulated with the classroomnin mind. Indeed, the book,nin effect, is something of a surveyncourse: Literary Theory from thenFormalists to the Post-Structuralists—andnBeyond. Mr.nEagleton proves himself to be anlupine professor in wool apparelnThat is, people who claim tonbe among the ranks of the “majornMarxist aestheticians” don’tnreadily desert thefr posts; Mr.nEagleton has had no Ulimiinationnsince he made his claiia So wMenthe book might appear to benabove suspicion (it even has anvery bouigeois Vermeer on thencover), it is actually a tractnwherein kernels of “right thinking”nare slipped in to aid the uninitiatednwho want to soundnknowledgeable in campus rathskellersnor English departmentnlounges. Mr. Eagleton sets up thenvarious theoretical models onlynto dialectically bash them about.nA line like “structuralism was thendupe of an alienated theory ofnscientific practice, one powerfiillyndominant in late capitalistnsociety,” almost makes us wantnto embrace the practice for nonother reason than to vex thosenlike Mr. Eagletoa By the end henScuttling the ShipnPhilip Jose Farmer: Gods ofnRiverworld; G. P. Putnam’s Sons;nNew York.nIn 1971 Philip Jose Farmernpublished To Your ScatterednBodies Go. With it. Farmernlaunched, figiu^tively speaking,nwhat has become known tonscience fiction devotees as then”Riverworld series.” There werenfour novels to landfall. Back innthat general period of time, KurtnVonnegut had become a darUng.nHe had previously been a nobody,na writer of third-ratenscience fiction novels. But whennthe cuddles began, he wrote anpiece for The New York TimesnBook Review in which he pouted,n”I have been a soreheaded occupantnof a file drawer labeledn’science fiction’… and I wouldnlike out, particularly since sonmany serious critics regularlynmistake the drawer tot a urinal.”nTo a degree, he’s right: peoplenhave regularly treated the genrenwith contempt. Part of thenreason tor that, of course, is thatnpulps about spiders from Marsnaren’t exactly well-wroughtnurns, and it may be a bit much toneven call them chamber pots.nHad Vonnegut’s Tralfamadorennot existed, no one would havenbothered to invent it However,nthere are some rogue sciencenfiction writers who can writennebulas around mere gas bagsnnnclaims, “There are indeed Marxistnand feminist theories of literature,nwhich in my opinion arenmore valuable than any of thentheories discussed here”—^andnit’s worth noting that the modestnMr. Eagleton discusses thosentheories through figures rangingnfrom Arnold to Derrida, by waynof theorists including Eliot andnBarthes. And we thought thatnthe Cult of the Lndividual was anno-no. nnlike Voimegut. Farmer is one ofnthem. Not only are the first fi)urnbooks of the Riverworld seriesnentertaining, they are also, to ancertain extent, educational Whilenpeople like Doctorow use anhistorical figure here and there.nFarmer didn’t fool around:nRichard Francis Burton, SamuelnClemens, Alice Pleasance LiddellnHargreaves {atLooking Glassnfime), Aphra Behn, Tom Turpin,nCyrano de Bei^erac, and severalnothers don’t make mere cameos,nthey are the characters. AsnFarmer knows something aboutnthem, has done more than a littlenhomework, their developmentnas characters and interactions inna world that he created (a Rousseauisticngarden that proves tonbe unsatisfying) is rather interesting.nBut Farmer couldn’tnleave well enough unescorted;nhe had to add Gods of Riverworldnwhich is as imlnterestingnas the tide is pretentious. Indeed,nitisfitforVonnegut’sdrawer. Dn