25 September 2009 at 15:33 Leave a comment

A quote from Philip Roth:

“Literature takes a habit of mind that has disappeared. It requires silence, some form of isolation, and sustained concentration in the presence of an enigmatic thing.”

I’m wondering when this magical time existed that people valued silence, isolation and concentration.

But I wonder if he means readers or writers? Certainly writers need the otium he’s describing, but readers?

I’m just not convinced that people have ever been all that quiet and thoughtful.

Of interest: this quote is from a movie review for Jane Campion’s Bright Star by Michael Sragow, which is about the poet John Keats. As much as I found the ending of her movie The Piano demeaning, I didn’t hate the directing, so I may have to try it out. I feel pretty safe what with the ending on this one being pretty certain.

The review is lyrical and inspired which leads one to think that the movie is lyrical and inspired.


Entry filed under: Nothing New.

Impediments A new Samuel Johnson biography goes unreviewed…

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T. Anderson Painter

I am a misanthrope. No one ever believes me, but this seems to prove my point.



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