Experiments Against Reality

Experiments Against Reality : The Fate of Culture in the Postmodern Age

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Experiments Against Reality displays the sophistication, breadth of knowledge, and clarity of argument that have made Mr. Kimball one of the most trenchant critics of our contemporary culture. He begins by considering the influential poet and theorist T. E. Hulme, and shows how the work of Eliot, Auden, Wallace Stevens, Robert Musil, Elias Canetti, and others can be seen as efforts to articulate a convincing alternative to the intellectual and spiritual desolations of the age. Turning to the philosophical tradition, Mr. Kimball suggests how figures from Mill and Nietzsche to Bertrand Russell, Wittgenstein, Sartre, Heidegger, Foucault, and Roger Scruton have addressed-or in many cases evaded-the defining moral imperatives of modernity. Finally he steps back to consider more generally the career of contemporary culture-the trivializing nature of the contemporary art world; the academic attack on historical truth and scientific rationality; the fate of the "two cultures" controversy. Experiments Against Reality offers continuing evidence of Mr. Kimball's stature as one of our most important cultural critics. Named an International Book of the Year by Mary Lefkowitz, Times Literary Supplement. "A scathing critic but one whose tirades are usually justified...His intellectual rigor is refreshing. Experiments Against Reality demonstrates what criticism can be if you take away all the theoretical scaffolding inherent in, say, a deconstructionist, structuralist or feminist reading."-Catherine Saint Louis, New York Times Book Review.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 368 pages
  • 139.7 x 210.82 x 25.4mm | 249.47g
  • Ivan R Dee, Inc
  • Chicago, United States
  • English
  • New.
  • 156663430X
  • 9781566634304
  • 823,852

Review quote

Will be required reading for those who want a significant perspective on how and why our contemporary culture got to be the way it is. -- Frederick Morgan Stylish, richly allusive, and immensely readable...an invaluable collection. -- John Gross One of the most candid and perceptive critics of American culture. -- Gertrude Himmelfarb Times Literary Supplement A model of investigative advocacy of argumentation, principles, and responsibility...a superb performance. -- Robert McDowell Hudson Review A scathing critic but one whose tirades are usually justified...his intellectual rigor is refreshing. -- Catherine Saint Louis The New York Times His position is conservative but not reactionary, humanistic but not populist, fresh but never trendy. John Simon A book you will relish and applaud. Roger Kimball's essays on recent poets and thinkers...are as wise as they are elegantly written. -- Martin Gardnershow more

About Roger Kimball

Roger Kimball is managing editor of the New Criterion and an art critic for the London Spectator. His other books include Lives of the Mind, Experiments Against Reality, The Long March, and Tenured Radicals. He lives in South Norwalk, Connecticut.show more