Friday, September 02, 2016

Chomsky Dissed by Wolfe?

Tom Wolfe
Google Images

In an AP article attributed to a certain Hillel Italie, "Tom Wolfe talks Darwin, Chomsky and human speech" (Washington Post, August 29, 2016), Noam Chomsky is reported as getting dissed by Tom Wolfe, and I was especially struck by Wolfe's dissenting analysis of Chomsky's rise to prominence:
"Chomsky's politics enhanced his reputation as a great linguist, and his reputation as a great linguist enhanced his reputation as a political solon, and his reputation as a political solon inflated his reputation from great linguist to an all-around genius, and the genius inflated the solon into a veritable Voltaire, and the veritable Voltaire inflated the genius of geniuses into a philosophical giant . . . Noam Chomsky."
This is an interesting analysis by Wolfe, but how do we know it's true? Did Chomsky's stature rise in this roundabout manner, each turn of this screwy path to would-be philosopher king resting upon nothing but the previous fateful twist?

But if Chomsky did rise in this fashion - and Wolfe should know fashion - then who can fill his bootstraps, a barren quest if ever there were one?



At 5:45 AM, Blogger TheBigHenry said...

Why would anyone want to fill Yesam Chumpsky's bootstraps?

At 6:07 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Hard to tell. Some people like barren quests of filling odd things.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 3:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is the guy who thought chimps were capable of human language, causing someone to refer to him as "Chimp Noamski?


At 5:26 AM, Blogger Carter Kaplan said...

If I may be so bold, I should like to suggest Jack Ma of the Alibaba group could fill Professor Chomsky's shoes. Please click the link below for an account of my discovery of Mr. Ma's stunning intellectual capacities.

Mr. Jack Ma, the next Chomsky

At 7:59 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Uncle Cran, does your question have something to do with Nim Chimsky?

Jeffery Hodges

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At 8:02 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Let's keep an eye on Mr. Ma.

Jeffery Hodges

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