irony, etc.

Doug Henwood dhenwood at
Wed Nov 17 10:51:36 PST 1999

Steve Perry wrote:

>well, what i have in mind at this very moment is that
>you ought to read the rest of the sentence, and the paragraph.

...which is:

>(and its longtime companion, paralytic
>cynicism) in the livelier minds round journalism and
>academe. they've essentially ceded "serious" writing to
>the dullards.

...and leaves me none the wiser. I'm at a loss to name the "livelier minds round journalism and academe" who are paralyzed by cynicism (which is very different from irony: irony is a longstanding though nonmonagamous companion of critique, while cynicism, as Horkheimer said, is the worst kind of conformity). Most academic writing is deadly earnest, and most American journalism is either just-the-facts empiricism or dumbshit cheerleading. I guess these are the dullards who've been ceded "serious" writing, but I'm still wondering who these bright & lively minds are.


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