Wednesday, October 06, 2010
THE DEATH OF LITERARY THEORY
Saw this on HTML Giant, Walker and Foer and Barthelme and other people.
I hate all these writers.
"What I find painters know is that kind of exploration of the qualitative relational possibilities of color, shape, and all of the things can be constructed with them. if, as I suspect you’re suggesting, they might know something else about the world, this frequently happens if they have been observant about the world, but I don’t think it’s necessary."
That doesn't even mean anything.
"In the New Republic, Dale Peck recently said you were upholding the high literary postmodern tradition, a tradition Peck claimed was bankrupt."
Dale Peck said something in the new republic, what does that even mean to call a tradition bankrupt?
"Middlesex is a postmodern book in many ways, but it is also very old-fashioned."
This is fucking science, this is literature.
"How do you move it forward?"
by being lame.
"What bothers me is the question the young lady asked you yesterday, that is, why do you write novels? And I’m hard put to imagine what kind of motivation you would have other than the fact that in writing you must be converging on some approximation of the way things are or the way you think things are, either in the realm of ideas or in the realm of the way things are in The Heart of the Heart of the Country or the heart of the heart of the American consciousness. It’s hard for me to imagine any novelist not being motivated by some desire to approach some kind of truth or what he thinks to be the truth. If I didn’t think that I don’t think I’d bother to set pen to paper. I can’t imagine what I would be doing if I wasn’t doing that."
This makes my dick hurt.
I don't understand this
All this fucking theory
Barthelme's books sold because he had funny sex shit in his books. Percy wrote like one book that no one reads anymore and Foer writes topical bullshit.
See the thing is this:
There is really no such thing as literary theory.
because a theory is a system.
A theory is like a machine.
That puts out at least similar results every time.
But great literature usually comes from random personal experience or another's personal experience or you just think of a nice story to tell.
Personal experience would be like On the Road or The Sun Also Rises
Other people's would be like Tale of Two Cities or Uncle Tom's Cabin
Nice story: The Trial or The Brothers Karamazov.
Pretty generalized here
The only way literary theory could really exist
is if it was applied at least 95% of the time and it had the same results.
The results could be a low selling book or a high selling book, but the results should be similar.
But the problem is that saying something like, "Joyce wrote lines in different languages to get to the best line or something"
That implies we should all do that or something.
I have no idea.
but that is the beautiful thing about a novelist
You are allowed to make things up
You are like a spiritual leader or something
pulling shit out of your ass is like sexy.
You can't make a theory out of it
There isn't any
Please fucking stop it