Another Music: Polemics and Pleasures

Front Cover
Transaction Publishers, 2011 M12 31 - 261 pages
As the essays in this book attest, in a time of specialization John McCormick chose diversification, a choice determined by a life spent in many occupations and many countries. After his five years in the U. S. Navy in the Second World War, the academy beckoned by way of the G. I. Bill, graduate training, and a career in teaching. Prosperity in the American university at the time meant setting up as a "Wordsworth man," a "Keats man," or a "Dr. Johnson man": all chilling to the author. He chose self-exile in which he disguised himself as an "Americanist" saleable in Europe, and lectured happily in comparative studies: literature, history, and philosophy. Thus the broad range of this volume, both in subject matter and in the span of time it covers. The essays are divided into three sections. First are general and personal essays on a variety of topics, followed by work on individual writers, and third, writings on criticism and theory. A section on Santayana reflects his eight years of research for Santayana's biography. The writings on Spain and toreo (bullfighting) result from another long-held interest, together with the author's attempt to alter some of the romantic nonsense about the running of the bulls in Pamplona, too often the entire substance of what the general public knows about Spain. McCormick has long been convinced that without knowledge of bullfighting, the foreigner cannot comprehend arcane and wonderful aspects of the Spanish character. The coda, "Another Music," is an old man's attempt to solve the mysterious algebra of how the world turns now, and how the young appear to the aged. While the volume is diverse in its range of writers--from Whitman in America to Santayana in Europe, taken as a collectivity, these essays provide a sense of the grandeur as well as the decadent in twentieth century politics and aesthetics alike. Written with the literary taste and political non-conformity that still characterizes McCormick, the volume is a treat for the specialist (perhaps) and for the generalist (certainly).
 

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Contents

The Berlin Uprising
3
The United Snopes Information Service
17
Federal Censorship
33
Gott Mit Whom?
37
A Most Mysterious Disaster
47
On Taste
51
Down Low and Hard Up
57
Snobbery and the American Scene
61
Toward a Comparative American Literary History
135
Problems and Occasions for the American Scholar
145
A Novel of Ideas
149
Santayanas Idea of the Tragic
153
The Last Puritan Once More
165
Santayanas Reading of Freud
171
George Santayana and Ezra Pound
183
Santayanas The Sense of Beauty
199

Part 2
65
The Rational Shelley
67
Orientalist or Nationalist?
71
The Urbane and the Urban
85
An English Bohemian in Spain
91
Lorca in Our Time
95
Philip Larkin
103
James Joyce and Hermann Broch
115
Part 3
125
Problems of Poetic Prose in English and French
127
Down with Translation
131
Mnemosyne
205
Benedetto Croces Æsthetic
211
Franco Spain and the Third Reich
217
Antonio Ordóñez and Others
221
The Bullfight Gentrified
227
Coda
233
Another Music
235
Name Index
245
Another Music
251
Copyright

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About the author (2011)

John McCormick (1918-2010) taught American Studies at the Free University, Berlin, and later went on to become distinguished professor of comparative literature at Rutgers University. He is the author of numerous works, including Bullfighting, American and European Literary Imagination, Catastrophe and Imagination, and Fiction as Knowledge.

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