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Old December 21st, 2017, 02:57 PM   #1
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Literary Canon, Culture Wars, Post Post-Modernism


I have cultural / academe questions. Hopefully this post will not be secretly deleted without explanation.

What has become of the Culture Wars of the 1980s and 1990s?

Did most major universities bend to a more contemporary and diverse Literary Canon?

What are the Great Books in the era of Post Post-Modernism?

Does cultural conservative William Benet really spend any personal time reading Last of the Mohicans, or any British literature written before 1890, or is that all posturing for effect?

Is anyone else put off that career academic folks that never worked labor-intensive or retail jobs their whole lives should dictate a canon that defines a proper liberal education? They never needed nor wanted "liberation" from their cozy lifestyles. How can they speak to me?
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Old December 22nd, 2017, 09:02 PM   #2
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Having been around this for a while in Australia. From an English literature perspective, the Canon's seem to be as relevant to some people as ever. Of course there are some that slip through in the post modern sense in Australia such as Christos Tsiolkas that offer post modern criticism of Australian and European lives. One of the books I am familiar with is Dead Europe in the guise of a dystopian post-modernist interpretation of life in today's Europe.

Where the Canons seem to be challenged more is in the process of creative writing, although this is an area I have never studied in directly. You can also be put off by people who have "never worked a day in their life in the real world" and I've heard this criticism before, but it normally tends to come from conservative minded people which would be surprising if you have an interest in the literary arts. As a writer its good to know where we have come from to get here, but I'd suggest you would find yourself more comfortable in the field of creative writing rather than the field of English literature studies.




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Last edited by orestes; December 22nd, 2017 at 09:11 PM.
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Old December 28th, 2017, 09:05 AM   #3

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Originally Posted by orestes View Post
Having been around this for a while in Australia. From an English literature perspective, the Canon's seem to be as relevant to some people as ever. Of course there are some that slip through in the post modern sense in Australia such as Christos Tsiolkas that offer post modern criticism of Australian and European lives. One of the books I am familiar with is Dead Europe in the guise of a dystopian post-modernist interpretation of life in today's Europe.

Where the Canons seem to be challenged more is in the process of creative writing, although this is an area I have never studied in directly. You can also be put off by people who have "never worked a day in their life in the real world" and I've heard this criticism before, but it normally tends to come from conservative minded people which would be surprising if you have an interest in the literary arts. As a writer its good to know where we have come from to get here, but I'd suggest you would find yourself more comfortable in the field of creative writing rather than the field of English literature studies.




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What's the difference between creative writing and literature? Wasn't all "literature" within the Canon at one time "creative writing?"

BTW--have been working my way for several years through Harold Bloom's The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages and have become acquainted with many authors and poets who I had not read before. One thing I'm finding is that the "classics" have become classics because they are fun to read. I would be really surprised if that turns out to be true about most of the works of the post-Modernists.
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Old January 10th, 2018, 04:24 PM   #4
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One thing I'm finding is that the "classics" have become classics because they are fun to read. I would be really surprised if that turns out to be true about most of the works of the post-Modernists.
I think you are on to something, David.
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