Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Prof. Jerry W. Ward, Jr. in THE KATRINA PAPERS: A JOURNAL OF TRAUMA AND RECOVERY (2008)
New Critics and New Bibliographers both tried to kill my FLAWED TEXTS AND VERBAL ICONS (1984), and I thought for many years that they had succeeded. In the last 5 years I have found that it is alive and well, cherished and recommended by scholars in wildly different fields who find that it is applicable to their aesthetic problems--biblical scholars, classical scholars, medieval scholars, Renaissance scholars, scholars of modern British novels, and others. I am happy to find what Jerry W. Ward, Jr., says, even though he thought that FT&VI was truly forgotten. He is so right about the parallel between me and him. He ironically talks about "recidivist scholars" and in a book being copy-edited now I have a chapter on "recidivist critics": we are talking about the same thing, the failure of critics to be scholars and the neglect of scholarship. What a wonderful thing for a condemned book to come to the attention of someone in a time of trauma and recovery. As a lover of New Orleans since 1953, what a wonderful thing to figure for a moment in this very interesting book.