The New York Times literary critic surveys the history of the newspaper’s book review to discover what has, and what hasn’t, changed in the last century.
The dearth of serious literary critique in contemporary society is concerning, because a robust literature depends on robust criticism.
In a brief survey of some core Western texts, Oates asks the key question, why do we want to experience fear in an aesthetic context?
Arguments that insist on the centrality of the western canon are most frequently a veil for the politics of exclusion.
Harold Bloom antagonized academics and cultural theorists, but remained a staunch advocate of transcendence through literature.