Friday, 15 October 2010


by John Barth

Note: This piece is simultaneously a microfiction and the longest story in existence. It is, in fact, an infinite story; and it is one of the clearest examples of John Barth's conceptual debt to Jorge Luis Borges. It can be found in Barth's excellent short story collection, Lost in the Funhouse: Fiction for Print, Tape, Live Voice (1968)

John Barth (1930-) is an American writer most famous for vast postmodern epics such as The Sot-Weed Factor and Giles Goat-Boy, although he is also adept at much shorter lengths. His incredible range of prose styles, deep philosophical insights, enormous erudition, immense narrative skill and restless originality have earned him a place at the very apex of the highest summit of World Literature. His epistolary book LETTERS is possibly the most complex novel ever written.