Paperbacks: The Essential Groucho, edited by Stephen Kanfer

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The Independent Culture

This addition to Penguin Modern Classics may be a startling choice but Woody Allen is in favour: "[He] will be equally funny a thousand years from now."

This is certainly the case with Groucho's response to the woman on his TV show who explained her 22 offspring: "Because I love my husband." Groucho: "I love my cigar too, but I take it out of my mouth once in a while." The selection ranges from Marxist prose to sublime dialogue from the comedies. Groucho: "That's what they call a sanity clause." Chico: "Ah, you fool wit me. There ain't no Sanity Claus." If that's not a classic, it's hard to know what is.