Monday, May 12, 2008

Smugness

It's possible that my message will never connect with those in established literature. The residents of that land are insulated by their own smugness. There's no need for contrary opinions when they already know everything.

Are they a mono-class? For the most part, yes. The power in print-media and publishing is concentrated in New York. The decision-makers are predominately Ivy Leaguers, which means, from the upper echelons of this society.

America's social stratifications aren't something I've made up. They're clearly visible for those who care to see them-- the bottom level most strikingly obvious in a city like Detroit, where only 25% of students even finish high school. What percentage go on to college? Graduate school?

Our well-educated Overdogs on the other hand, several who post here, overwhelmingly from comfortable backgrounds, will have none of it. They dismiss notions about the "real world," because to them their catered life is just as real. Any criticism of themselves that seeps through to them is just so much carping from an "eternal outsider"; from a caricature. Smugly, they insist I don't know how the machine works. "You just don't know!" they say, from the safety of the latest cocktail party. "Those people in the photos, the socialites, have nothing in common with the publishing grunts, much less a creative writing instructor in Iowa"-- and this has a sliver of truth. The Machine encompasses many levels-- I've never said otherwise. It itself is very hierarchical. It's sustained because those toward the bottom (not at all at the bottom of America by the way; only of the Machine) never question it, and allow through their subservience the obvious power of the monied at the top.

Those who refuse to see caste in America and in the creation of its literature aren't fooling me, whatever happens to me. The realities I live among are all too true, incapable of being ignored. The smug literati in their castle of illusion are fooling themselves.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Quick, quick! Put a lot of posts up so the posts celebrating the deaths of others and where commenters are scoring points are bumped off the main screen!

King said...

?? Now who's being paranoid?
No-- "Harland" made some points that I've felt the need to respond to, so I'm responding to them-- and awaiting his replies.