It operates as a refuge for a civilizing element in short supply in contemporary America: honest criticism
An old-fashioned picaro
by Pat Rogers
On The Adventures of Roderick Random and Tobias Smollet.
was right!Support The
One upon a time, and a very good time it was in many ways, people with a broad education in the humanities would routinely encounter novels like Roderick Random.1 All round the world, students taking courses on Brit Lit had little chance of avoiding Tobias Smollett, unless they managed to track down some alternative option that allowed them to go off piste into a subject like Old Norse. He figured among the early masters of English fiction (women didn’t get a look in, prior to Fanny Burney and Jane Austen). But today the syllabus of a literature program may well include film noir, graphic novels, rap or vampire videos—in most schools it would be easier to get specialist instruction on fans’ responses to Buffy the Vampire Slayer than on the work of, say, George Meredith. This ...
This article is available to subscribers and for individual purchase
This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 31 November 2012, on page 10
Copyright © 2015 The New Criterion | www.newcriterion.comhttp://www.newcriterion.com/articles.cfm/An-old-fashioned-picaro-7469
E-mail to friend
by Pat Rogers
Untangling the facts and fictions of Jonathan Swift's life
A lecture delivered by Charles Murray after he received the third Edmund Burke Award for Service to Culture and Society.
by Bruce Bawer
A new collection of Henry James's letters reveals the early development of the writer.
September 29 2015
Friends and Young Friends Event: Book Launch Party with Peter Pettus
October 02 2015
Friends and Young Friends Event: "The Corruption of our Political Institutions," a symposium
The Walter Duranty Prize for Journalistic Mendacity
Introduction to The Kennedy Phenomenon
The Kennedy Phenomenon: "Watching the Kennedy Train-Wreck"