A Confederacy Of Dunces

by Toole, John Kennedy

A Confederacy of Dunces is a picaresque novel written by John Kennedy Toole, published in 1980, 11 years after the author died by suicide at the age of 31. The book was published through the efforts of writer Walker Percy (who also contributed a revealing foreword) and Toole's mother, Thelma Toole. In 1981, it won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, granting posthumous recognition to John Kennedy Toole. The novel has since gained a cult following and is celebrated as a classic of American literature.

Set in New Orleans during the 1960s, A Confederacy of Dunces revolves around the eccentric and socially awkward protagonist, Ignatius J. Reilly. Ignatius is an obese, unemployed, highly educated man who lives with his overbearing mother.

The novel follows Ignatius as he navigates various misadventures, often clashing with the world around him due to his pompous intellect and disdain for modern society. Ignatius is a self-proclaimed philosopher and writer who spends most of his time writing in his ever-present journal, "The Journal of a Working Boy," where he criticizes the world's perceived injustices.

Ignatius's life takes an unexpected turn when his mother forces him to find a job to contribute to their finances. His misadventures in the working world lead him to cross paths with a colorful cast of characters, including his eccentric employer, a former girlfriend, a politically active barmaid, a black prostitute, and a policeman who becomes obsessed with exposing Ignatius's alleged communist activities.

The novel's humor lies in the absurd situations, ironic dialogue, and the juxtaposition of Ignatius's intellectual pretensions with the realities of his daily life. Through Ignatius's escapades, the novel explores themes of societal conformity, alienation, and the clash between traditional values and modernity.

First Edition Identification

The first edition of A Confederacy of Dunces was published by Louisiana State Univ Press in 1980. Only 2,500 true first editions were printed, with 1980 on title page, and copyright page without additional printings stated. The first issue dust jacket has a Walker Percy blurb on the rear panel. 

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On Dec 7, 2004, pazzobooks said
One of the most built up novels of all time - while it didn't fall flat on its face by any means, the build up ruins it. Extremely funny at times, but impossibly uneven. If no one has ever told you it's the best book ever, give it a try.

Available Copies

A Confederacy of Dunces  [First Printing with Signed Correspondence of Thelma Ducoing Toole]
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A Confederacy of Dunces [First Printing with Signed Correspondence of Thelma Ducoing Toole]

by Toole, John Kennedy; Percy, Walker (Foreword)

Condition
Used - Fine
Jacket Condition
Very Good
Edition
First Edition
Published
1980
Binding
Hardcover
ISBN
9780807106570
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Baton Rouge and London: Louisiana State University Press, 1980. True first edition; 1980 at title page and copyright pages without additional printings stated. One of only 2,500 of the first printing. Tan full cloth boards, black stylized spine titles, light shelf wear. Pages generally near fine, no writing; few at front with little discoloration at edge. … Read more about this item
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A Confederacy of Dunces
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A Confederacy of Dunces

by John Kennedy Toole

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Used - Good-
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Good-
Edition
First
Published
1981
Binding
Cream boards with gold lettering to spine.
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DW. Not price clipped (7.95). Some tape marks on inside of dw some of which show through the dw in places. Faded dw spine. Very small name (Jordi) on FEP. Good clean and tight copy. Quite bad yellowing to spine of binding.
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A Confederacy of Dunces

by Toole, John Kennedy (Foreword By Walker Percy)

Condition
Used - Very Good + Book
Jacket Condition
Very Good + Dust Jacket
Edition
1st Edition 1st Printing
Published
1980
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Cloth
ISBN
9780807106570
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Pasadena, California, USA
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Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1980. 1st Edition 1st Printing. Cloth. Very Good + Book/Very Good + Dust Jacket. First Printing (1980 Date On Title And Copyright Pages, No Additional Printing Indicated.) In First Issue Dust Jacket (Price Clipped, Walker Percy Review On Back Panel, No Sun Times Review). Near Fine Book, Slight Bumping At Bottom Of… Read more about this item
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€3,017.30
A Confederacy of Dunces: ‘Probably my favourite book of all time’ Billy Connolly (Penguin Essentials, 15)

A Confederacy of Dunces: ‘Probably my favourite book of all time’ Billy Connolly (Penguin Essentials, 15)

by Toole, John Kennedy

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9780241951590
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Paperback. Good.
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A Confederacy Of Dunces

by Toole, John Kennedy

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Used - Fine
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Fine
Edition
First Edition
Published
1980
Binding
Hardcover
ISBN
9780807106570
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Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S.A.: Louisiana State Univ Pr, 1980 This copy is a first/first. Originally purcashed by a bookseller/collector, he did not read this copy and has remained on his shelf until now. The original Walker Percy quote on the back dust jacket. . First Edition. Hard Cover. Fine/Fine.
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A Confederacy of Dunces: ‘Probably my favourite book of all time’ Billy Connolly (Penguin Essentials, 15)

A Confederacy of Dunces: ‘Probably my favourite book of all time’ Billy Connolly (Penguin Essentials, 15)

by Toole, John Kennedy

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A Confederacy of Dunces SIGNED
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A Confederacy of Dunces SIGNED

by John Kennedy Toole

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Used
Edition
First Edition, First Printing
Published
1980
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Clarence, New York, USA
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Baton Rouge and London: Louisiana State University Press, 1980. First Edition, First Printing. First edition, first printing with no additional printings listed on the copyright page. First issue dust jacket with the Walker Percy blurb on the rear panel. Signed by author Walker Percy, who wrote the foreword for the book, on a tipped in page professionally affixed by… Read more about this item
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A Confederacy of Dunces
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A Confederacy of Dunces

by Toole, John Kennedy

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Used - Very Good
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Very Good
Edition
1st Edition 3rd Printing
Published
1980
Binding
Hardcover
ISBN
9780807106570
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Baton Rouge, LA, U.S.A.: Louisiana State University Press, 1980. 1st Edition 3rd Printing. Hardcover. Very Good/Very Good. Baton Rouge, LA, U.S.A.: Louisiana State University Press, 1980. Book. Very Good. Hardcover. 1st Edition. 1980 Louisiana State Press stated 3rd printing of Toole's amazing novel. This wonderful book is in VG/VG- condition. The HB is very clean, tight and with… Read more about this item
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A Confederacy of Dunces  [Second Printing in First Edition Wrapper]
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A Confederacy of Dunces [Second Printing in First Edition Wrapper]

by Toole, John Kennedy; Percy, Walker (Foreword)

Condition
Used - Very Good
Jacket Condition
Very Good
Edition
First Edition
Published
1980
Binding
Hardcover
ISBN
9780807106570
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Baton Rouge and London: Louisiana State University Press, 1980. Signed by professor and author Walker Percy on tipped-in leaf prior half-title page: "Walker Percy." Percy, a professor and author himself, was instrumental in having this discovered gem miraculously published. 1980 at title page and copyright. Stated second printing. Light beige w/hint of green, full… Read more about this item
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A Confederacy of Dunces
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A Confederacy of Dunces

by Toole, John Kennedy

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Used - Near Fine
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Fine
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First Edition Later Printing
Published
1994
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Hardcover
ISBN
9780807106570
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Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Louisiana State University Press, 1994. First Edition Later Printing . Hardcover. Near Fine/Fine. Pulitizer-prize winning novel that "outswifts Swift,'' with its title taken from one of his essays, set in the author's home of New Orleans, Louisiana. First published in 1980, 11 years after the author's suicide, largely by the efforts of his mother, Thelma,… Read more about this item
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A Confederacy of Dunces
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A Confederacy of Dunces

by Toole, John Kennedy

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Edition
First Edition
Published
1980
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Baton Rouge: Lousiana State University Press, 1980. First Edition. Very Good+/Very Good+. First edition, first printing. Bound in publisher's tan cloth with spine lettered in black. Very Good+ with foxing to cloth, slight splaying to boards and pages lightly toned. In a Very Good+ unclipped first issue dust jacket with Walker Percy quote on rear, light wear at… Read more about this item
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A Confederacy of Dunces

A Confederacy of Dunces

by John Kennedy Toole

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Paperback
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9780140058895
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A Confederacy of Dunces  [First Printing]
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A Confederacy of Dunces [First Printing]

by Toole, John Kennedy; Percy, Walker (Foreword)

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Used - Good
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Good
Edition
First Edition
Published
1980
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Hardcover
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Baton Rouge and London: Louisiana State University Press, 1980. True first edition; 1980 at title page and copyright pages without additional printings stated. One of only 2,500 first printings. Tan full cloth boards, black stylized spine titles, light shelf wear, moderate discoloration at back board. Pages generally near fine, clean; moderate discoloration to apprx. 1" of lower… Read more about this item
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A Confederacy of Dunces  [First Edition, Eighth Printing]
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A Confederacy of Dunces [First Edition, Eighth Printing]

by Toole, John Kennedy; Percy, Walker (Foreword)

Condition
Used - Fine
Jacket Condition
Fine
Edition
First Edition
Published
1980
Binding
Hardcover
ISBN
9780807106570
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Rapid River, Michigan, USA
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Baton Rouge and London: Louisiana State University Press, 1980. 1980 at title page and copyright page. Stated eighth printing. Oatmeal colored full cloth boards, black stylized spine titles, fine. Matte mustard lime endpapers. Pages fine; no writing. Bind fine, square. Dust wrapper, slight wear; unclipped 14.95, protected in new clear sleeve. Wrapper… Read more about this item
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A Confederacy of Dunces

by John Kennedy Toole

Condition
Used - Fine
Jacket Condition
Near Fine
Edition
FIRST
Published
1980
Binding
Hardcover
ISBN
9780807106570
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PASADENA, California, USA
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Louisiana State University Press, 1980. Book. Fine. Hardcover. FIRST. A NEAR FINE FIRST EDITION SECOND PRINTING IN second ISSUE DUST JACKET NOT PRICE CLIPPED.
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A Confederacy of Dunces (Signed by Walker Percy)

by John Kennedy Toole

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Edition
First edition.
Published
1980
ISBN
9780807106570
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A truly lovely Signed copy of the posthumously published Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by author John Kennedy Toole. First edition, second printing (stated( with no additional printings listed on the copyright page. First issue dust jacket, which features a blurb by Walker Percy on the back panel. Elegantly signed on the title page by novelist Walker Percy, who wrote the foreword… Read more about this item
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A Confederacy of Dunces: ‘Probably my favourite book of all time’ Billy Connolly (Penguin Essentials, 15)

A Confederacy of Dunces: ‘Probably my favourite book of all time’ Billy Connolly (Penguin Essentials, 15)

by Toole, John Kennedy

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Used - Acceptable
Binding
Paperback
ISBN
9780241951590
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GORING BY SEA, West Sussex, GBR
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A Confederacy of Dunces

by Toole, John Kennedy

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Used - Good
ISBN
9780802130204
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Reno, Nevada, USA
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Grove/Atlantic, Incorporated. Used - Good. Former library book; may include library markings. Used book that is in clean, average condition without any missing pages.
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Confederacy of Dunces (Penguin Modern Classics)
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Confederacy of Dunces (Penguin Modern Classics)

by John Kennedy Toole

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New
Published
2011
ISBN
9780241951590
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Portsmouth, Hampshire, GBR
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Reprinted paperback edition in new condition,unread ,NEW
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A Confederacy of Dunces

by John Kennedy Toole; edited by Walker Percy

Condition
New
Jacket Condition
AsNew
Published
1994
ISBN
9780807106570
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Lynn, Massachusetts, USA
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Louisiana State University Press, 1980. 336 pages. 13th Printing of First Edition. NEW Hardcover, Fine DJ. 9.25"x6.25"x1.25". be45.
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€910.76