Saturday, July 25, 2009

Richard Rorty on Literary Studies Today

  • "I think that the English departments have made it possible to have a career teaching English without caring much about literature or knowing much about literature but just producing rather trite, formulaic, politicized readings of this or that text. This makes it an easy target. There's a kind of formulaic leftist rhetoric that's been developed in the wake of Foucault, which permits you to exercise a kind of hermeneutics of suspicion on anything from the phonebook to Proust. It's sort of an obviously easy way to write books, articles, and it produces work of very low intellectual quality. And so, this makes this kind of thing an easy target from the outside.", Rorty, interview in The Dualist, 2, 1995, pp. 56-7
Thanks Prof Rorty for saying this.

2 comments:

Canadian Pragmatist said...

I'm just curious as to exactly what you think he means by, "hermeneutics of suspicion."

Sachin Ketkar said...

He implies paranoid school of literary criticism and theory ( `they are out to get us' school of cultural studies...