belated but joyful posting

Dear all,
I find myself in an overwhelming week of dreadfully packed days and cannot imagine being able to write anything substantial until Friday at the earliest…and maybe even Sunday. I’ll be covering the “four poles of the Christian imagination” chapter, and I will need more time (dinner was pizza at the Q74 bus stop). But I didn’t want any more time to go by without saying what an enriching experience reading The Triumph of Augustan Poetics has been–just the kind of book that you want to press into the hands of anyone interested in poetry or culture. I wish I had read it years ago. For me this is a model of what a critical book should be. The book is, first of all, extremely generous, opening up all kinds of entrance points into the period–letting you explore all kinds of valleys and streams of your own, testing out the arguments against your own pursuits. But Parker also honors & enriches the reader by offering his opinions of texts and giving you a sense of the intellectual work behind this judgement. I like the way he shows his cards, over and over again–there’s a unique combination here of deep thinking and a kind of open-ended joyfully opinionated discerning engagement.

More later. Hours to go before…

5 responses to “belated but joyful posting

  1. The pizza in Queens is a sin, dear Carrie. When this is all over, we should go to Una Pizza Napoletana.

    I second your enthusiasm, loaded as the word may be. I felt momentarily guilty about reviewing a book by someone on my committee as a possible conflict of interests, but now I only wish I’d made an excuse for myself to read it before I’d taught Augustan aesthetics in my survey. This model seems not only critically responsible and productive, but also wonderfully teachable. Earlier here, I complained about feeling bad about the ad hoc descriptions of aesthetic developments I throw together to this class, which could only spend a few weeks on the Enlightenment, and Parker could have done much of that quick, responsible descriptive work for me through the Triumph.

  2. Carrie the Hintz:

    Pizza on a bus? You sound like you’re working too hard. But the end of the term is nearly here. Have a glass of wine, or eat a cookie, and count the days until grades are handed in.

    Best wishes,


  3. Would you New Yorkers please stop talking about pizza? It’s just rubbing it in for those of us living in the hinterlands where Dominos and Papa Johns reign….

  4. KW,

    My thoughts exactly. And don’t get me started on the Italian restaurants in Houston.

    I do have fond memories of the Two Boots in the East Village. It’s probably an NYU dorm, or a Bebe outlet store, by now.


  5. Two Boots not only still exists; it has expanded to include shops in the W. Village, Grand Central, and an overwhelmingly child-friendly restaurant a block away from me in Brooklyn.

    I should mention that no one volunteered for the next chapter, so unless someone jumps in, I’ll post something this afternoon.