The Accidental Anthropologist:
Subject: Literary Non-fiction
Format: Paperback with gatefolds
'... my lifelong preoccupation with renewal ... lies in the childhood fantasy without which I could not have endured – that another life awaited me elsewhere, or with another, and once reborn in that other world, I would find fulfilment and happiness.'
One of the key figures in Michael Jackson's unorthodox and extraordinary memoir observes, "We do not own our own lives – we are not in sole possession of the truth about ourselves." Faithful to this view, Jackson delivers his remarkable life in subtle shadings, halftones, and haunting, melodious lines.
From his New Zealand beginnings, when he associated with James K. Baxter, Fleur Adcock, Bob Lowry and others, Jackson's quest has taken him across Paris in the footsteps of his literary hero, Blaise Cendrars, to the doss-houses of London, among the remote Kuranko people of Sierra Leone, and into the Australian desert. This award-winning poet, ethnographer and novelist likens his life course to that of a shape–shifter, making it apparent that our lives are as various as the bonds we form and the social landscapes through which we move.
The Accidental Anthropologist is a magnificent memoir: astute, absorbing and deeply illuminating.
... spellbinding. Literary memoir at its best. Vincent O'Sullivan
Reviewers Comments ...
'This is a complex and absorbing book...’ - New Zealand Books, 2007
'THE ACCIDENTAL ANTHROPOLOGIST is a superb piece of New Zealand literature and thought, the tale of a small-town boy with big ideas; it is erudite, poetic and inspirational.’ - The Nelson Mail, 2006