Download e-book for kindle: Agitations: Essays on Life and Literature by Arthur Krystal

By Arthur Krystal

ISBN-10: 0300092164

ISBN-13: 9780300092165

From small questions of style to massive questions in regards to the nature of lifestyles, highbrow debate takes up a lot of our time. during this paintings literary critic Arthur Krystal examines what such a lot commentators forget about: the position of temperament and flavor within the forming of aesthetic and ideological critiques. In provocative essays approximately analyzing and writing, concerning the relation among lifestyles and literature, approximately wisdom and walk in the park, approximately God and demise, and approximately his personal slow disaffection with the literary scene, Krystal demonstrates that opposing issues of view are dependent extra on innate predilections than on disinterested idea or research. no longer beholden to any trendy idea or political time table, Krystal interrogates the standard suspects within the cultural wars from an self sustaining, even though now not neutral, vantage aspect. essentially own and unabashedly belletrist, his essays ask very important questions. What makes tradition something and never one other? What conjures up aesthetic values? What drives us to make comparisons? and the way does a bias for one form of proof instead of one other give a contribution to the shape and content material of highbrow argument?

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Witwer’s prose is brisk, workmanlike, and certainly superior to that found in the story weeklies, dime novels, and hundreds of pulp magazines that catered to the tastes of a vernacular-preferring public. Me and Cockeyed Egan was tourin’ ‘‘God’s Own Country’’ (Russian for the West), where the natives would rather be Harold Bell Wright than be president, each with a stable of battlers, picking up beaucoup sugar by havin’ ’em fight each other over the short routes, when Kane Halliday skidded across my path.

Cultural Literacy received the glowing (some might say glowering) endorsement of former Secretary of Education William Bennett and other conservative pundits. Properly gratified, Hirsch also knew that such august benediction could put liberals o√ the book’s thesis, which, in brief, finds a net loss in shared knowledge. If Hirsch is right to fret over this knowledge drain, he is rather optimistic in putting so much stock in what education may ultimately achieve. Functional literacy and e√ective national communication are no guarantors of decency or moral rectitude.

So memory has been corrected. But there is more than a tinge of melancholy in such emendation. Neither the book nor its youthful reader exists for the other as they did on first meeting. The Leather Pushers is dated, longwinded, not without its dull patches. The same might be said of its middle-aged reader. But something else can be said as well. For just a few minutes while paging through the novel, I sensed through the haze of years and the intellectual veil lowered by critics and well-intentioned professors what it was like to read as if there were no tomorrow.

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Agitations: Essays on Life and Literature by Arthur Krystal

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