Lewis Hyde is a poet, essayist, translator, and cultural critic with a
particular interest in the public life of the imagination. His 1983
book, The Gift, illuminates and defends the non-commercial portion of artistic practice. Trickster Makes This World (1998)
uses a group of ancient myths to argue for the kind of disruptive
intelligence all cultures need if they are to remain lively, flexible,
and open to change. Hyde's book Common as Air is a
spirited defense of our "cultural commons," that vast store of ideas,
inventions, and works of art that we have inherited from the past and
continue to enrich in the present.
A MacArthur Fellow and former director of undergraduate creative
writing at Harvard University, Hyde teaches during the fall semesters at
Kenyon College, where he is the Richard L. Thomas Professor of Creative
Writing. During the rest of the year he lives in Cambridge,
Massachusetts, where he is a Faculty Associate at Harvard's Berkman
Center for Internet and Society.