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I am opposed to writing about the private lives of living authors and psychoanalyzing them while they are alive. Criticism is getting all mixed up with a combination of the Junior FBI-men, discards from Freud and Jung and a sort of Columnist peep-hole and missing laundry list school. … Every young English professor sees gold in them dirty sheets now. Imagine what they can do with the soiled sheets of four legal beds by the same writer and you can see why their tongues are slavering.
Those who are esteemed umpires of taste, are often persons who have acquired some knowledge of admired pictures or sculptures, andhave an inclination for whatever is elegant; but if you inquire whether they are beautiful souls, and whether their own acts are like fair pictures, you learn that they are selfish and sensual. Their cultivation is local, as if you should rub a log of dry wood in one spot to produce fire, all the rest remaining cold.
‘American Sniper’ is a movie whose politics are so ludicrous and idiotic that under normal circumstances it would be beneath criticism. The only thing that forces us to take it seriously is the extraordinary fact that an almost exactly similar worldview consumed the walnut-sized mind of the president who got us into the war in question.
DeFrantz’s study…is not the first book about the protean Ailey, who was born in hardscrabble Texas in 1931 and died in 1989 after creating close to 80 works. But it is perhaps the most comprehensive, combining biography, criticism, the analysis of dance criticism, and a sort of corporate history, siting the now firmly established Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in the international cultural landscape.