Date of publication: 2017-08-28 09:14
A fairly recent book about Kafka soon arrived at my door, then several others. Then articles and notes and more books. This was disarming. My experience writing for editors up to that point had been confined to British newspapers where the emphasis was upon speed, topicality, and personal alignment with the subject. There&rsquo s nothing a British editor likes more than sending out a recent novel about the Berlin Wall to a writer who only last year wrote a novel about the Berlin Wall.
Bob was having none of that. How could we run two stories on a country that had lived under the systematic repression of thought and expression for decades, and not mention it? I grumbled and fought the summer heat was approaching, I had no sources, a rumor was going about that everyone&rsquo s go-to human rights victim was now suspect, and, ultimately, I hated the very idea. Not knowing of Bob&rsquo s ties to that institution, I said the whole thing sounded like something worthy of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Arnold believed that a modern writer should be aware that contemporary literature is built on the foundations of the past, and should contribute to the future by continuing a firm tradition. Quoting Goethe and Niebuhr in support of his view, he asserts that his age suffers from spiritual weakness because it thrives on self-interest and scientific materialism, and therefore cannot provide noble characters such as those found in Classical literature.
The reason the Catholic Church has so much sodomy and sexual perversion including pedophilia is because they are the Harlot of Revelation. Only God can forgive sins and yet a Pope claims that authority and Priests, Cardinals etc. What a joke. Only God who is Jesus Christ can forgive sins and that church is of Satan,not Christ.
Chester B. Himes disdained literary conventions. In prison, he reimagined himself as a new kind of "black literary realist." He was largely forgotten, until now. more »
Countless little magazines and literary reviews have been conceived as a refuge from the crowd, a perch for Icarus. The New York Review was meant to be different. Frustrated by the lazy gentility of American book reviewing and its detachment from wider intellectual and cultural currents, the editors invented a genre for what they hoped would be a new audience. The digressive review-essay style that became the paper&rsquo s trademark presumed that a writer could bring intellect to matters of soul without violating either, and that there was an audience for such writing. From the start, the Review was a democratic, pedagogical project.
Dmitry Bykov &rsquo s work has baffled non-Russian-speaking critics. But understanding the author of &ldquo How Putin Became President of the USA,&rdquo among other fairy tales, is worth the effort. more »
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Arnold united active independent insight with the authority of the humanistic tradition. He carried on, in his more sophisticated way, the Renaissance humanistic faith in good letters as the teachers of wisdom, and in the virtue of great literature, and above all, great poetry. He saw poetry as a supremely illuminating, animating, and fortifying aid in the difficult endeavour to become or remain fully human.
&ldquo All right, kiddo,&rdquo he said, signing off, the last time we spoke. In that conversation he happened to mention that the medications he&rsquo d been taking were not working. Honestly, he seemed more concerned about Trump&rsquo s immigration policy. He suggested, in his offhand way, that I might read a certain article in Foreign Policy. It was something to think about. So I did.
You can judge critics by the intensity of their feelings. Exhibit A: Michael Robbins , who swoons for Taylor Swift and tosses Molotovs at Charles Simic. more »