Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Said’s Anti-Aesthetic

After adding the postscript to my last post, I wrote to John: When you read it, see if you can imagine that it's written by William F. Buckley, Jr.

John’s reply was charitable: If this consoles you, I could imagine that your post was written not by Buckley, but by Edward Said.

Well, John, imagine again.

Said, from “Opponents, Audiences, Constituencies and Community,” reprinted in The Anti-Aesthetic:
What is the role of humanistic knowledge and information if they are not to be unknowing (many ironies here) partners in commodity production and marketing, so much so that what humanists do may in the end turn out to be a quasi-religious concealment of this peculiarly unhumanistic process? A true secular politics of interpretation sidesteps this question at its peril.
More directly:
Moreover, I think, “criticism” and the traditional academic humanities have gone through a series of developments over time whose beneficiary and culmination is Reaganism.


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