Friday, October 28, 2005

But isn't what we experience when reading the Hebrew Bible or the New Testament the same as when we read Homer, Shakespeare, Cervantes, or Proust? Isn't the difference between the scriptures and worldly literature only social and political? The centuries-long polemics on the contrasts between poetry and faith can perhaps be reduced to the question of whether we should consider one poem or story holier than another. I have long since come to the conclusion that we can say with certainty that any powerful literary work is holy. And the opposite claim, that it is worldly, is equally valid. But it would be completely senseles to consider any great literary work holier or worldlier than another.

Fantastic interview with Harold Bloom in Eurozine.

"I stated writing fiction as kind of an exercise," he said. "There wasn't always a melody lying around, and I was really paranoid about writer's block. I had never tried to write anything but songs because I thought, 'I have an eighth-grade education, so I can't write anything but songs,' but then I thought, 'the only reason I'm not totally ignorant is that I read a lot.' I wrote a story, and then another."

And Steve Earle's play Karla has opened in New York. Bruce Weber talks to him about the play, the death penalty, writing fiction in prison, and his marriage to Allison Moorer.

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