Beyond the Blurb: On Critics and Criticism. Published by Cow Eye Press
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A fundamental problem with the ideological critique is that it often fails to say something revealing about a particular work of literature. I was just recently reading Jameson's work on Raymond Chandler, and while Jameson has a great deal to say about detective novels and mass culture, he has almost nothing interesting to say about Chandler's writing. He's just not that interested in it, except as a symptom. I suppose that is the dead end of the ideological critique. If literature doesn't deserve our attention for its own sake, but only as a symptom of something else (e.g. economic reality, capitalist ideology, etc.) then why concern ourselves with it? Perhaps some writers allow us to glimpse outside of the prison of our ideology, but then, they don't have to be artists, do they? Why not read pamphlets or tracts instead?

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