Sunday, November 15, 2020

A literary mystery …

When the Worst Man in the World Writes a Masterpiece | Fantastic Anachronism. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)
Perhaps it is in vain that we seek correlations among virtues and talents: perhaps genius is ineffable. Perhaps it's Ramanujans all the way down. You can't even say that genius goes with independence: there's nothing Boswell wanted more than social approval. I won't tire you with clichés about the Margulises and the Musks.


  1. I can't now find the piece by Marvin Mudrick in which he spoke well of Boswell's book on Corsica. But in the essay "The Entertainer", collected in Books are Not Life, But Then What Is?, he mentions a "stuffed prune of a critic" who as late as 1932 wrote of Boswell in terms suitable for a character sketch of Frank Harris by Queen Victoria. The prune family seems to be going strong.

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