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Notes & Comments

December 1999

Rename the Turner Prize

For some years now, the excellent English monthly review of books Literary Review has sponsored a Bad Sex Contest. Readers submit preposterous descriptions of sex from the current crop of novels, and the editors at the Literary Review have the delicate task of choosing the most awful candidate. Needless to say, there is always an embarrassment of riches. The winning submission is regularly accompanied by any number of honorable mentions. The same spirit informs the Bad Writing Contest sponsored by the scholarly journal Philosophy and Literature. Winners of that contest have included Homi Bhabha, Fredric Jameson, and Judith Butler—a triumvirate of absurd figures whose unintentionally laughable writing richly deserves the obloquy conferred upon it by the Bad Writing Contest.

With these noble precedents in mind, we would like to suggest that the Tate Gallery in England consider r ...

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This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 18 December 1999, on page 3

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