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In it Addison provided a systematic exposition of critical assumptions that shaped eighteenth-century literature, as well as numerous anticipations of those that influenced the literature of a later time.He wrote essays on Paradise Lost, a poem resembling classical models; and he wrote essays on “the pleasures of the imagination,” trying to assimilate the empirical and conceptual discoveries of near-contemporary philosophers and show their relevance to aesthetics.
Last year, at the height of my madness, I realized what it resembled: academic literary criticism of a great author.
There is the same impulse to collect and the same reluctance to judge.
To prove how much you love ; to prove your love for Colin Meloy, you listen to Tarkio.
There is the same fetishistic interest in variant performances and the same concern for the artist’s preservation from commercial interference.
I have saved old issues of British music magazines with very limited circulations.
I have avidly read essays in praise of my beloveds, no matter how insipid the style or recondite the detail.I have wondered about my beloveds’ personal lives and inspected their songs for hints of autobiography.If a love of mine sings a song by another musician, I buy that musician’s album too, and try to like it.It offers an account of how writing happens across the course of a lifetime—in between the daily realities of kids and jobs (even pharmaceutical company jobs)—and how teachers inspire us to inhabit our best selves, or at least catch sight of what those selves might look like.There are lines in here that are some of the best descriptions I’ve ever read, casually uttered, as if Saunders could just toss them off before breakfast, which he probably could, and probably does.Its critique sings with the possibility of what can be.So many people read and loved this beautiful piece by Saunders but I’m going to talk about it here because (dammit! It made my pulse race with the sheer fervor and eloquence and non-photoshopped specificity of its appreciation—its appreciation for teachers, for literature, for teaching. I considered and reconsidered everything about my aesthetic development with Victorian earnestness.I had conflicting aims—to become a writer and to suppress acknowledgment of my sexuality—and so I required careful management. In the past few years I have become a fan—something I never dared in high school.(But of course part of his gift to us, in this piece, is showing us that nothing was easy and everything comes along the course of a long, winding road.) Of his teacher Tobias Wolff, he writes: “Toby is a powerful man: in his physicality, in his experiences, in his charisma. It is as if that is the point of power: to allow one to access the higher registers of gentleness.” WTF??What a magnificent thing to say about another human being. They were deliberately expensive—drawing on a subconscious premium we place on the American lifestyle pre-Civil Rights—and of course, save Addy, all the American Girls were white. The slim book that introduces her, , tells the story of a slave owner forcing a worm into the mouth of his property, that dark-skinned and adorable American girl.