Friday, October 26, 2012

Comment to Katie Ryder

I've submitted a comment to a post by Katie Ryder at the literary site Guernica Magazine, here:

My comment awaits moderation. I'm giving it here, in case it's not posted:
I just noticed this. Quite a lot of contradiction in this piece. Whether there are truly banned books today, there are certainly banned writers– such as the populists and zinesters who made up the Underground Literary Alliance. The centerpiece of the reactionary attack on the ULA was the Tom Bissell essay in The Believer, republished this year in his collection of essays. You, Katie, did two interviews with Mr. Bissell and seemed to agree with everything he said, asking him not one hard question. Such as, “Was your ‘classocide’ slur against the ULA exaggeration? What about the ‘lots and lots of tombstones’ line?” Amazing to me how the purported defense of the lower classes– including writers– by the literary and media elite is in fact very sketchy.
Banned books indeed!
Have a good day.
(The Bissell essay taken apart at