From a leading contemporary critic, scholar, and writer comes this often funny and frequently tender autobiography. The Gatekeeper presents Eagleton's deep-etched, ever-compelling portraits of those who influenced him, either by example or by contrast: his father, headmasters, priests, and Cambridge dons. The author, we find, was a shy, bookish, asthmatic boy keenly aware of social inferiority yet determined to make his intellectual way.
The Gatekeeper mixes the serious with the downright hilarious, skewer-sharp satire with unashamed fondness, the personal with the political. Most of it all it reveals a young lad and a young scholar learning to reconcile oppositions: a double-edged portrait of the intellectual as a young man.