"Immersion in the life of the world, a willingness to be inhabited by and to speak for others, including those beyond the realm of the human, these are the practices not just of the bodhisattva but of the writer." --Jane Hirshfield

Monday, October 6, 2008

Ig-Nobel Sentiment

Of all the responses I've read to Engdahl's sour grapes dis, or publicity stunt -- see below, here are my favorites:

From the Telegraph:

To start with: what does it mean to be "the centre of the literary world"? It means - quite simply - to write in English. The oldest, the most diverse, and the most voraciously acquisitive living literary tradition in the western world is English; and it is one that is more available to more people than any other single literature.

If you're talking about "the centre of the world" you're talking - surely - about lines of influence. More of them run through the Anglosphere (for in contrasting America to Europe, surely, he's contrasting America 'n' Britain to continental Europe) than anywhere else.

The author goes on to point out that English is the language of the internet. Not exactly isolated.

From Michael Dirda, at the Washington Post:

It is a bit rich for a citizen of Sweden, whose population of 9 million is about the same as New York City's, to call the United States "isolated."

Roger Kimball, Editor of The New Criterion:

"It strikes me as a kind of publicity stunt for a prize that in recent years has demonstrated its fatuousness...."

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