Lucid, Generous & Humane

Inner Workings
Literary Essays 2000–2005
J. M. Coetzee
Viking, $25.95, 304 pp.

Evaluating the worth of critics in 1932, Ezra Pound quite rightly gave the highest praise to readers, like himself, who could strengthen the work of friends like Yeats and Eliot before it was published. The next most valuable critics were those who made discriminating judgments about published works. Finally, Pound condemned those egoistic, careerist critics who drew attention to self and tried to make a name for themselves at the expense of the books under review:...

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About the Author

Jeffrey Meyers, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, has recently published Samuel Johnson: The Struggle (2008), The Genius and the Goddess: Arthur Miller and Marilyn Monroe (2009), George Orwell: Life and Art (2010), and John Huston: Courage and Art (2011).