Literary criticism

Short Fuse Podcast #43: What is Poetry For?

August 17, 2021
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Host Elizabeth Howard talks with poet and performer Kyle Ducayan, executive director of the Poetry Project at St. Mark’s Church in the Bowery, about the purpose of poetry.

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Book Review: Literary Critic James Wood and the Art of ‘Deep Noticing’

August 7, 2015
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We will always need critics to show us how literature works by revering it rather than interrogating it as if it had committed a crime.

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Book Review/Commentary: Why Lionel Trilling — and Serious Criticism — Matters

January 1, 2012
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The essential task of the critic is not to like or dislike the arts or to push bromides, such as to celebrate the “power of reading.” Despite some troublesome modifications, Lionel Trilling carries on the mission of E.A. Poe and Henry James: he articulates the value of the serious act of judgment in a culture hostile to it.

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Book Review: Matinee Modernism — Celebrity and Academia Converge and It Isn’t Pretty

August 22, 2011
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What could have been a readable, informative, pleasurable book that would, much like Woody Allen’s recent film MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, enhance our experience of some of the modernist figures we adore wallows too often in brain-dead literary theory.

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Arts Commentary: With Friends Like These — The New York Times Explains Why Criticism Matters

January 13, 2011
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The important question the NYTBR Editors fail to ask is whether the traditional definition and values of literary criticism will survive in an age of ebooks and iPads. Is there a primal appetite for criticism? (Edith Wharton says there is, and I believe her.) How will the Internet shape our innate desire to compare, judge,…

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