Thursday, 31 May 2007

Continuing the Conversation: More Althouse, More Ari Just dispatched the London chapter—which, by the by, clocked in at a healthy-for-me 38 pages—so I'm a little distracted. I may have something else up tonight, or I may never write another word again so long as live. Fortunately, other people are picking up the slack: Jeffrey Jerome Cohen, Karl Steel, Eileen Joy and Dr. Virago continue the deserved pelting of Ann Althouse for her views on what is and isn't literature. I'm sure she thinks this continued attention proof positive of some sort of vortex, but honestly, it is pure sport. No more, no less. That said, if you failed to read her exchange with Kugelmass on this post, you're missing out. It went like this: Althouse: I read JK's thing. I thought it was laughably imperious, windy, and obtuse. Kugelmass: Your reaction at my blog was quite different, but no matter; what it has in common with this is the belief that throwing down a series of random negative adjectives is the same as offering a counter-argument. Althouse: Thanks for coming over here and showing what a fusty old fart you are. Why should I spend my time writing out arguments responding to you? Who are you? Not a good writer. Not someone with ideas that impress me. Why should I spend my time like that? Shouldn't a lawyer know better than to prove the validity of the point she countermands? Speaking of Kugelmass, he finished his second written exam today. Stop by his place and congratulate him on a job (no doubt) well-done. Finally, Sisyphus responds to the podcast on blogging, complete with a tribute to Yours Truly. Were I not tired of words and their meanings, I'd respond to this bit in particular: What I really want to do is ask the other panelists what their reaction was to the last dude, who was very energetic and funny, but in a rather cutting, mean way, tromping all over the utopian-access-to-the-public-sphere vibe of the other speakers (and he seemed to be trained as a speaker, whereas everyone else is renowned for their blogging, i.e. their writing style, which doesn't seem quite fair in a matchup. Why were they brought in live, instead of to blog things?). But if they were to respond to my questions about the final dude, on their blogs, how truthful would they be able to be? Wouldn't they feel an impulse to be polite, or at least strategic, in their responses about someone they had actually met in real life? It would go something like: "I don't think Ari was being mean, but then again, when I hear the name 'Ari,' this man springs to mind." A more serious response later, when I'm capable of responding seriously.

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