« Tethered to the World | Main | Vanity »



steve mitchelmore


Am I excused because my blog has mentioned Sainte-Beuve?


it's the typical kind of backlash you'd expect from someone who sees the foreshadowing of a pink slip in their immediate future.


I pulled this section of the paper out of a trash bin at my local coffeeshop. Later, while walking my dog I'd forgotten to bring a plastic bag so I used my pilfered newspaper to pick up the shit. But this morning I remembered that there was one line I really liked:

"The act of writing for print, with its implication of permanence, concentrates the mind most wonderfully. It imposes on writer and reader a sense of responsibility that mere yammering does not."

I wanted to paste it into your comments so that I knew I could come back to it, archived in a safe place that I wouldn't lose access to in a few weeks' time.


Good job! Richard Schickel is clearly. . .intolerable. He is THE guy that every artist tries not to think about while they strive to create something worthy of the masses of "simpletons" who generally walk into bookstores to purchase literature with the pure intention of enjoying it and go to museums in hopes of seeing something that might move them. I have to wonder if Schickel ever enjoys anything, or if he is too busy hailing himself as the ultimate authority on whom is qualified to judge and comment upon "any cultural object" (as he retardedly refers to what us know-nothings think of as "Art and Literature" - things that everyone is supposed to be entitled to enjoy and comment upon regardless of their "qualifications" or supposed lack thereof). As if a Reader is not qualified to judge a book that they have read! As if a person with eyes in their head is not qualified to judge a thing that they can see clearly!

Jonathan Mayhew

He uses Sainte-Beuve as his example of the ideal reviewer, with the comment that Sainte-Beuve is not a name heard on many literary blogs. What most people remember Sainte-Beuve for, however, is Proust's skewering of him in "Contre Sainte-Beuve." Without even having read Sainte-Beuve, I tend to go along with Proust's devastating attack.

Dave Munger


Best comment EVER!

Antoine Wilson

This blog is kryptonite to Schickel's Superciliousman.

Mike M.

This made me laugh. Really, all I can say is... how do people like that find work?
In print apparently...

Randy Thornton

Let us rephrase that logic a wee bit:

"The act of writing for a BLOG, with its implication of IMMEDIATE WORLD WIDE PUBLIC EXPOSURE, concentrates the mind most wonderfully. It imposes on writer and reader a sense of responsibility that mere NEWSPAPER OPINIONATING does not."

Anyway, what do you expect from someone who thinks Mani Ratnam's Nayakan is one of the 100 greatest films of all time...

Robert Nagle

Oh, yes, I was blogging about Sainte-Beuve before it was fashionable to do so. http://www.imaginaryplanet.net/weblogs/idiotprogrammer/?p=83398256

Ok, it's easy to pile on richard Schickel.

Let me try to offer a half-defense.

Richard is one of the rare individuals who can be a critic as a full time job, thus arousing the envy and irritation of others. I generally enjoy his reviews which are clever and insightful. He has a knack for infusing erudition into his reviews on lowbrow stuff. Is his stuff that much better than online bloggers? Probably not. But by now he's a brand name, and more power to him for benefitting from it.

Here's where he seems myopic:

1)print reviews have very limited word length. Wouldn't he write much better critiques if he didn't face that restriction?

2)time-warner media properties. If he were not writing for time-warner properties, would he have been giving the same degree of critical attention to their movies? What serious subjects is being crowded out by the latest profile of the latest Harry potter movie?

3)If Time-Warner asked him to turn into a fulltime blogger, would he do a good job? My guess is no. (and guess what--even time.com is turning into a blogging empire).

I could anticipate a future when a major media property swoops up and hires someone like Dan Green to blog full time. If that happened (and let's hope it does), don't you think that accepting that opportunity would entail compromises at some point?

Dan Green

Robert: I've also generally enjoyed Schickel's film-related writing. For me, this only makes his defensive, blinkered response to the possibilities of blogging only more disappointing.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Sorrentino banner
In Progress