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Stephen L. Tanner is a professor of English at Brigham Young University.
More than 50 years after his death, Irving Babbitt continues to evoke a sympathetic response from minds and temperaments attuned to the ethical worldview fostered by classical and Christian thought. Within the last decade, much of his writing has been reprinted, and a cluster of critical studies has appeared.
One of the casualties of the current culture wars is the Western. No other genre, it seems, is so politically incorrect. The Western is accused of racism, sexism, and imperialism—three strikes and you're out.
For about 30 years Wendell Berry has been writing fiction, poetry, and essays motivated by what he identifies as "a desire to make myself responsibly at home in this world and in my native and chosen place."
In his 1935 essay "Religion and Literature," T.S. Eliot argued that modern literature had become progressively secularized. In response he proposed that "literary criticism should be complemented by criticism from a definite ethical and theological standpoint."
Eliseo Vivas once said, "I would not for a minute pretend solidarity with men who do not realize that one of the essential marks of decency today is to be ashamed of being a man of the twentieth century."
More than 50 years after his death, Irving Babbitt continues to evoke a sympathetic response horn minds and temperaments attuned to the ethical world view fostered by classical and Christian thought.
Zulfikar Chose was born in Pakistan, grew up in British India, emigrated to England in 1952, and since 1969 has taught in the English department of the University of Texas. He is married to a Brazilian and has enough knowledge of South America to write novels set there.
Why is it that America has noticed the "Boom" in Latin American fiction but has ignored Latin American philosophy? One obvious reason lies in the unavailability of translated texts.
Six of this book's 10 essays were presented at a conference commemorating the 50th anniversary of Irving Babbitt's death.
Malcolm Bradbury describes Peter Handke as "unmistakably one of the best writers we have in that selfdiscovering tendency in contemporary writing we have chosen to call postmodernism."
The situation is familiar to any student of socialist revolutions: The revolution is over, and the political apparatus has become authoritarian and alienated from its popular base. The lives of real people become less important than the economic programs and ideological causes of a growing bureaucracy.
"Livin' is like pourin' water out of a tumbler into a dang Coca-Cola bottle. If'n you skeered you cain't do it, you cain't. If'n you say to yoreself, 'By dang, I can do it!' then, by dang, you won't slosh a drop."
Jacques Derrida has in recent years made himself one of the most influential figures in literary criticism on American college campuses. The movement he has inspired, alternately known as "deconstruction" or "poststructuralism," asserts that all language is metaphorical and that there is nothing outside the literary text.
This is the kind of novel that inspires slick reviewers and writers of publisher's blurbs to new outrages in inflated but tacky description: "lusty," "brawling," "pulsing with ambition," "passion and greed," "an epic saga."
Nothing seems very certain nowadays for writers of fiction. Traditional religious and moral values have been under attack for so long that many writers uncritically assume they are thoroughly discredited.
Winner of France's Renaudot Prize, this autobiographical Bildungsroman is a first-person narrative of a young man from a Belgian village who begins as a seminarian and ends as a disillusioned anarchist.
Accepting the Nobel Prize for Literature on December 12, 1930, Sinclair Lewis used the occasion to attack academic traditionalists, who, he said, "like their literature clear and cold and pure and very dead."
This collection, announces Franz Rottensteiner in his introduction, gives us none of the traditional "high" fantasy of heroic quests in imaginary lands, filled with magic and sorcery and pitting good against evil.
The title alludes to Whitman's Democratic Vistas, and David Marc, a professor of American Civilization at Brown University, begins, ends, and sprinkles the middle of this study with quotations from Whitman.
Reading this book reminds one of the unsettling and sometimes frightening and incapacitating experience of becoming acutely self-conscious of one's own breathing or heartbeat.
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