Friday, January 27, 2017
Reviewing Attempts to Silence Me
I am not in the least ornery, but in order to write ORNERY PEOPLE I have been looking over some of the attempts to silence me during half a century. The attempts have sometimes succeeded for a couple of decades, at the longest, and sometimes I got into print only to have a promise to reprint a piece reneged on. This 1985 letter was one of the most distressing because the article was absolutely temperate, just descriptive insofar as it dealt with Fredson Bowers. Six years after this suppression of my article on The Reviewing of Scholarly Editions a brave woman, Edna L. Steeves, published it, uncensored, in EDITORS' NOTES, 10.2 (Fall 1991). But decades later, I was still having to repeat one of its findings in TLS: The Bowers Worshippers Keep Closed Ranks Still.
The editor who rejected the article soon died of cancer, before he could ask forgiveness. I am nothing if not forgiving, myself, but my oh my fighting to tell the truth takes it out of you.