>> Tuesday, December 08, 2009
I confess I anticipated the possibility that Fish would review Going Rogue, as he has fashioned himself in his Times blog into a more loquacious Ann Althouse, but I hoped it wouldn't be quite like this. But now, there it is, indelibly posted on Stanley Fish's blog forever, daring me to believe that there is any point in going on, that there is any amount of success and eminence you can achieve that can't be hopelessly shat away. I make my living, such as it is, reading books and teaching other people how to read them, so I take Fish's embarrassing review as a personal affront. But it's more than personal; it's existential. Not only is Fish's review an object lesson is just how inane it is possible for a person to be and still mean it, it implicates all human endeavor in its inanity. It says: the only context in which it makes sense for you to be reading this is in a rocking chair, slowly rocking, on the front porch of civilization, rocking slowly as the sun sets, rocking slower, and ever slower, until you and everything there is expires.