On Conclusions Without Proof

January 30th, 2008 · 6 Comments
by Kassia Krozser

One thought that should console the upholders of print journalism is that while blogs make a great deal of fuss about being where the action is, they contain little decent criticism. It is rare to encounter good critical writing on the internet that didn’t start life in print form. Lively literary websites—or online magazines with literary sections—do exist, especially in the US: Salon, Slate, the Literary Saloon. But blogging is best suited to instant reaction; it thus has an edge when it comes to disseminating gossip and news. Good criticism requires lengthy reflection and slow maturation. The blogosphere does not provide the optimal conditions for its flourishing.

File Under: Quote of the Week

6 responses so far ↓

  • Huysmans // Jan 30, 2008 at 2:55 pm


    In general you are right and would tend to agree with you when looking at the blogosphere as a whole. But when you do that with print I think you would find the same results. Those who know where the critical is in print can easily find it, that ease has not yet been established as concretely for the web. But I don’t think it is because the blog is not designed to be critical, it just hasn’t been as explored critically as it has journalistically.

    One example that comes to mind that was not mentioned in the post is the work of Grand Text Auto, http://grandtextauto.org, where a the process of publishing a critical essay on narrative and digital technology is being developed by a blog and its community.

    But again in general I agree that most blogs are situated to report and react, but I think they can be designed for reflection and maturation, as some may already be.


  • Catching up and going places « Literature’s Next Frontier // Jan 30, 2008 at 5:33 pm

    […] I came across a post today regarding blogs and their ability to be critical. Kassia over at Booksquare has suggested in a recent post that blogs do not have the abilities print does to be critical and […]

  • Kassia Krozser // Jan 30, 2008 at 5:45 pm

    Just noting — I am quoting from another source (follow the link). My feelings on this subject are quite opposite of those in the article being quoted.

  • benny thomas // Feb 1, 2008 at 6:20 pm

    Blogs from my somewhat limited experience is not literary criticism in its narrow sense. Raves and rantings cannot be well thought of or mature. As for me I maintain blog because I feel I have something to say and it has not that kind of wider appeal to interest traditional book publishers or find place in traditional journals. Each day I write because I can explain many of my hypotheses from events past or present and also learn. So blogging is for me a rather private literary exercise and sharpening my intellectual faculties. These blogs have been put into a couple of books and marketing them well it yet another ball game.

  • Mischa KK Bagley // Feb 3, 2008 at 5:09 pm

    Hi Booksquare Guys:

    I really like your site.

    I’ve been following you and subscribing since last year, and have had a link to your site on my blog-roll since then.

    Just thought I’d let you know!

    Best regards,
    Mischa KK Bagley.



    ‘Sex, Cathedrals & Metamorphosis’


  • Kassia Krozser // Feb 10, 2008 at 5:03 pm

    Benny — I think that you are not reading the right blogs. Like all forms of publishing, there is a lot of chaff to separate before you get to the wheat. And maybe it’s because I look at this medium differently than most. The blogging platform is just an enabler that allows a writer or other content creator to get information online quickly. Blogging software comes with tools that allow non-technical people to publish great content.

    Smart, thoughtful, well-read, critical thinkers use blogging platforms to write intelligent analysis of today’s literary environment. Not only are we seeing a diversity of opinion, but we are seeing a more collaborative environment. This is a good thing. Very good thing — the old way of working clearly didn’t do much to expand the world of reading. It’s time for a new model.