Via The Wooden Spoon:

At the Times Literary Supplement, David Hawkes reviews Russell A. Berman’s Fiction Sets You Free, a capitalist dialectical materialist critique of literature. "Like the most doctrinaire dialectical materialist, he insists that cultural trends are epiphenomenal reflections of economic interests. Anti-Americanism is really anti-capitalism, and in Fiction Sets You Free, Berman suggests that anti-capitalism is the true source of an intellectual anti-humanism which opposes imagination, enterprise, even literature itself." It's painful just to see the book reviewed, but I expect these kinds of theories to start popping up all over. Berman apparently tries to cite Theodore Adorno as a predecessor of pro-capitalist literary theory. This is insane. It's like Ayn Rand citing Lenin as a great influence. The inmates are loose! Release the hounds!

Readers Comments

  1. A capitalist dialectical materialist critique of literature? Sounds wonderful. Hopefully one can expect this will be extended to a capitalist dialectical materialist critique of Dutch Renaissance painting. I struggle to see how anyone could read and enjoy a book in anything like its fullness without interpreting it in such terms. How simple life would be if instead of being so messily complex, we were all simply elements within mathematical, economic theories.
    The debased mind can but see life on its own miserably narrow terms.

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