Our future in other hands

21 01 2011

There is a piece in The New York Times Book Review that I found interesting. It is in a discussion about the place of the literary critic. Talking about the once esteemed position of the critic: “For Matthew Arnold, the inability of his contemporaries to write in what he called the grand style led him to a general critique of Victorian society which he saw as addicted to materialism and utilitarianism. I’m not sure if anyone is writing this kind of criticism today – certainly the most admired literary critics aren’t – and the reason is probably the one Kazin cited: ‘the growing assumption that literature cannot affect our future, that the future is in other hands’.” I love literature, love writing poetry, creating stories, novels, but the torch for the ideas are being carried elsewhere. But where?