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Wednesday, 11 November 2009


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James T

Jesus Christ, that is bleak (if unsurprising; she's been coming out with trash like this at Salon for yonks).


She started off well, but I think took the casualness of internet communication too much to heart and started, well, rambling. As often as not, her "columns" read like a bunch of Andy Rooney segments stitched together into a singularly grand complaint about the kids these days who need to get off her lawn.


I had to click through and read it, because I honestly couldn't tell if you were kidding about those last bits. Much to my dismay, you were not.

Her academic inflation schtick sticks in my craw as an historian: she's citing a cost of $413.50 per semester in 1964, without noting that these are 1964 dollars. Using a robust relative values calculator that looks like it would be somewhere between three and nine thousand dollars in 2009 values (the variation, for those of you who don't want to click through and play with a cool toy, is because it uses multiple data sets including CPI, GDP share, consumer bundles, wages, etc.). That's for one semester, which puts her annual cost at between six and eighteen thousand dollars. So, what's SUNY-Bighamton cost these days? $17,380.


I was tired of Paglia by the end of her first Salon article -- way back when the earth was new.


She started off well

Must have been before my time.


The Psycho analogy is actually accurate (unexpected from Paglia, I know), as that is precisely what Norman Bates does in the movie, and presumably Paglia thinks that Dawkins sounds like that.

I'm afraid I'm with Tomemos though: When had Paglia ever not gone a-ranting with logic-free comparisons?


John: but that, I think, just makes it clunkier. Like, "His voice went all Jurassic Park, as if he were being chased by dinosaurs" is clearly redundant.


I just ran across, for the first time, this gem from 1991. You've probably seen it, Scott, but your other readers might not have.


Actually, I hadn't seen that, but it's absolutely going to go into my response.

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