5 dic. 2009

I made the mistake of reading something by Ortega y Gasset yesterday. I wanted to look again at the essay on Andalusia. The idea about the essential laziness of the Andalusian culture is pretty damn intolerable. Ortega is no hero of mine, and neither is Gasset. (That's a joke.) I'm thinking this whole tradition of Spanish philosophy is pretty hard to take, from Unamuno to Zambrano. I know I should like Zambrano, because she is important to a lot of people in the general vicinity of things that I otherwise admire, but I cannot take her either. Her writing, her ideas.

It's interesting (to me at least) how a lot of things I write about, I'm approaching from the posture of irritation and resistance. I actually don't think good criticism can be entirely appreciative. You've got to hate something about the writer you're dealing with, or something in the existing criticism. Take Valente, about whom I've written practically a whole book, if you add up all my chapters and articles. I think he's very important, and I admire a great part of his work and what he stands for; yet I also find him profoundly irritating.

On the other hand, I couldn't spend my life studying Ortega (or Gasset). You have to have a core respect for the object of study.

1 comentario:

mongibeddu dijo...

I read some Ortega y Gasset because it turns out he was important for Olson, and through him Olson absorbed some key ideas from German philosophy. There's a fair amount of Olson criticism that works out parallels between Olson and Heidegger, and I have this feeling that the parallels are due in large part to Olson's engagement with Ortega. I have a feeling, also, that Olson is not the only writer read against a tradition engaged by way of the Spaniard, though Ortega is never acknowledged. Which doesn't make Concord and Liberty, or whatever, any more interesting to read. But there's probably an essay to be written on this mediation.

Ben F.