The mornings on which I don’t teach a class at 8am I often spend reading random articles online. This morning these two were among them – both relating to our conversation on Thursday about the role of critics, whether or not DFW is pretentious (although we didn’t exactly define what that means), and whether distinctions ought to be drawn between “high” and “low” art.

A. O. Scott, a film critic for the New York Times, offers a defense of his work in the form of a self-interview and uses the example of a mixed review he gave the film The Avengers and the popular backlash it spurred. His argument/defense is interesting, and worth a read if this is a topic of interest for you.

The other, a short piece in The Guardian by Stephen Poole in response to Dan Fox’s Pretentiousness: Why It Matters, is a bit lighter and more linguistic in approach, but interestingly looks at assumptions we make about what is pretentious and why.

Just a little food for thought on this freezing cold weekend.