Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Ta-Nehisi Coates on Grant's memoirs
But I am ultimately self-regarding and thus mostly concerned with my own process. I have lived as someone whose main use for history consisted of establishing a self-confirming identity and pressing collective grievance. At all events, a preening moralism and a need for validation by this longest story has guided me.

...It's all just too much. I am a black man, and God only knows what Grant would have made of me in that time, or in this one. I asked myself that question so many times while reading that I made myself ill. I don't care to ever hear it again. Grant is splendid to me, and I am sick of keeping score.
The above is what earns Coates the faint, condescending, praise of self-styled academic intellectuals. Neither are aware fully what it means that he was obliged to learn alone what earlier generations, Ellison and Baldwin, were raised with: the sad pleasures of self-awareness. Liberal academics lag behind Coates, since they can't see their own condescension for what it is.

Happy Birthday H.P. Lovecraft. I highly recommend the essay on him by the French reactionary writer (and one of my favorites, to be honest – I don't care about his views on Islam) Michel Houellebecq. 
And this

jumping forward

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