U.S. Intellectual History Blog

A Quote for Tuesday

“Criticism is tradition defending itself against the three armies of the Goddess Stupidity: the army of amateurs who are ignorant of tradition; the army of concerted eccentrics who believe tradition should be suppressed by a stroke of the pen in order that true art may begin with them; and the army of academecians who believe they maintain tradition by a servile imitation of the past.”

W.H. Auden, “The Mental Kitchen,” Harper’s (December 2007): 19.