Cory Leonard

No Self-Mockery, Please, We’re American

In politics on September 20, 2013 at 4:14 pm

Deep thoughts not from Jack Handy, but rather Terry Eagleton’s new book Across the Pond: An Englishman’s View of America on US and European stereotypes and William James (of course):

The United States is one of the few places where stylelessness has become a style, cultivated with all the passion and precision of a Woolf or a Joyce. It is against this current that the likes of Bellow, Toni Morrison, and Adrienne Rich are forced to swim. It was not always thus. Jeffersonian Virginia was renowned for its oratory and rhetoric. A fluency of speech and manner was thought by some Americans of the period to provide a bulwark against the dangers of demagoguery.

via No Self-Mockery, Please, We’re American – The Chronicle Review – The Chronicle of Higher Education.



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