Thursday, July 21, 2005

The Literary Essay

Sarah Kerr's prognosis of the ailing genre of literary essay would have rung true for many of us who read this Slate article in 1999. It was an apt observation for the time.

"Our job is to diagnose the current health of the literary essay, and since diagnosing is a stressful business, let's not beat around the bush. Here's what I think is going on. It's clear that our patient, the essay, is operating well beneath his full capacity. He's not as robust or playful as he used to be; his vision is a little cloudy; and lately he's been clinging to known routines, which could be an indicator for some form of depression. However, and let me emphasize this, I see absolutely no reason to despair. After a thorough going-over, I can tell you his brain is functioning normally. I see no alarming growths, viruses, inflammations, or arterial clogs. There's nothing fatal going on here--nothing that some exercise and a change of scenery couldn't cure."

Blogosphere seems to have provided the rejuvenating exercise and change of scenery Kerr had prescribed resulting is wonderful things like this essay on coffee lids by Phil Patton among many others.

3 comments:

Alonso Ralphs said...

Are there other forums/blogs that are more specific for this topic? I have not found one.

Heartcrossings said...

Not that I know of. Thanks for stopping by.

Geraldo Emberton said...

Very interesting.