Conservative Criticism, Discouraging Difference

Emily M. Keeler is a writer and the editor of...

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Renata Adler, interviewed by The Believer, on contemporary literary criticism: “More like a race to join the herd of received ideas and agreement.” And Sheila Heti, interviewed in Numero Cinq, on contemporary literary criticism: “It’s fun to see that stuff going on in America. In Canada, nobody was talking about the book in that way, so it’s cool to see it being used as a prop in peoples’ arguments.” Okay, and Michael Lista, in epistolary conversation in Poetry, on contemporary (especially Canadian) literary criticism: “Conservatism is the worst thing with which a critic can be charged; it implies that you’re inured to the only faculty that makes you worth reading—the ability to be surprised by the authentically new and have your mind changed by it.”

AA Bronson, interviewed by Blouin Art Infoon working as an artist in Canada: “I’m not aware of any individual or institution making a ‘difference’ in Canadian art, but then I have to ask, different from what? Canadian culture, for the most part, discourages difference.”

I like trade paperbacks just as much (if not more) than hardcovers, so I’d like them to stick around. And like Nichole Berner, I’m pleased that they extend the shelf life of some books, and even relaunch themselves. She gets into the point of continuing the paperback process over at the Millions.


||Judy Radul, from World Rehearsal Court
The Truth About the Truth
The case here described is real, witnessed by the author in Small Claims court. The names have been changed and some…