Book Description:

We disagree. From small questions of taste to large questions concerning the nature of existence, intellectual debate takes up much of our time. In this book the respected literary critic Arthur Krystal examines what most commentators ignore: the role of temperament and taste in the forming of aesthetic and ideological opinions. In provocative essays about reading and writing, about the relation between life and literature, about knowledge and certainty, about God and death, and about his own gradual disaffection with the literary scene, Krystal demonstrates that opposing points of view are based more on innate predilections than on disinterested thought or analysis.Not beholden to any fashionable theory or political agenda, Krystal interrogates the usual suspects in the cultural wars from an independent, though not impartial, vantage point. Clearly personal and unabashedly belletrist, his essays ask important questions. What makes culture one thing and not another? What inspires aesthetic values? What drives us to make comparisons? And how does a bias for one kind of evidence as opposed to another contribute to the form and content of intellectual argument?

eISBN: 978-0-300-14560-1
Subjects: Language & Literature