Monthly Archives: September 2013

Things are worth doing badly or not at all/dilettante schmilettante

You can perfect your skills, strive to make every action a credit to yourself, a service to your community. Or you can just dip into others’ painstakingly acquired virtuosities with your nervous collecting energies and force your subjectivity on them.

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saints, cakes, aphorisms

I’ve been considering a canon of saints I can believe in, saints of hypocrisy, self-contradiction, misplaced self-knowledge, and other forms of effortfully baroque recursion. Such a deprecated approach to life, but hypocrisy is the best way of having your cake and

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One problem with being a carpetbagger

I have a geographical ethnology of flattery.  The thing about the NE or West Coast (and as usual add Chicago) is that immigrant culture predominates.  However well known this fact is, it is nevertheless ever underappreciated.  When wily  fresh-off-the-boaters, or,

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More James

Henry James has plenty of explicit classical references, but his ties to the classical world go beyond that for me. It’s an autobiographical fact that, although a heavy consumer off early and mid period James, the later novels were hard

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Henry James makes some similar points

Henry James on ancient Rome, “one of the modern Romans,” and his contemporary London.  Consider referring to my earlier post. The beginning of The Golden Bowl, pub. 1904. The Prince had always liked his London, when it had come to

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