Tuesday, October 20, 2015

PS to yesterday's entry . . .

Stephen Vincent Benét
- an older and wiser man -

A different, more grounded, but equally "disdainful" reviewer also panned my paper on Stephen Vincent Benét. I say "disdainful" because of this remark to my citation of an encyclopedia to ground the distinction between ethnic and civic nationalism:
The author . . . simply appropriates/promulgates the ethnic/civic paradigm (gleaned from an encyclopedia) without analysis.
I didn't "glean" this from an encyclopedia. I simply cited a clear distinction offered by an encyclopedia because the audience in a session on literature and national identity - for whom I initially noted the distinction between ethnic and civic nationalism - seemed utterly unaware of this distinction and found the distinction difficult to fathom. My citation was a courtesy to that initial audience after a question-and-answer session revealed the confusion.

That should clarify the context, but the deep "disdain" is the assumption that because I don't expound upon some aspect of critical theory or literary theory in my writing, then I must be ignorant of it.

Therefore, listen, you doubters, disdainers, you double-down deniers, I studied under Martin Jay at UC Berkeley, and I understand critical theory. I've read plenty of literary criticism since then, and I know the connections between the two. I edit for various journals, and I know what you're talking about, so don't assume that I'm ignorant.

Read my writing with at least a modicum of humility . . .

Labels: , ,


At 2:57 PM, Blogger Sperwer said...

Gosh, the last thing academics needs is more pro forma reiteration of the tenets of that oxymoron, "critical" theory. It's long been an orthodoxy that has ossified into a sort of ideological catechism, the purpose of endlessly reciting which seems to be to drown out through sheer repetition any description of the facts independent of being displayed on its tortured racks of convention masquerading as theory and any genuinely critical thought.

At 6:02 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Exactly. Thanks again, Sperwer!

Jeffery Hodges

* * *


Post a Comment

<< Home