Friday, November 20, 2020

Weighed in the balance and found wanting …

 … Harold Bloom finally betrays how little he really understood literature. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

No one is going to base a claim for Bloom’s merits on this final book. But it does indicate, with painful acuity, that the critic may have had little understanding of how literature is made — which is not out of ideas, as Mallarmé patiently explained to Cézanne. It doesn’t achieve its effects by saying ‘this is funny’ or ‘this is so moving’. It relishes its own voice — and to dwell on what it has stolen from others misses its ambition.

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