Hapax Legomenon Redux
Harriet celebrates Poetry Month with this hilarious post by con man Kenny Goldsmith, in which he makes good on his promise of “uncreative writing” by quoting a vacuous, jargon-ridden exercise in what passes for criticism in the back alleys of academe. “Conceptual writing signaled the end of the era of individual voice,” opines Ms. Johanna Drucker. “Poetics of the swarm, mind-melding writing, poiesis as the hapax legomenon of the culture?” (No, that question mark is not an typo. It is in Drucker’s text and is as mysterious there as it is here. But then Drucker is not interested in clarity, or thought, or poetry, or art. She is interested in sounding smart at the faculty cocktail party.) “Conceptual writing,” she assures us, “is not the same as algorithmic processing.” What it is she doesn’t seem to know. This is because conceptual writing is a con, a long hit of laughing gas, a pseudo-intellectual’s wet dream. Taking it seriously is dimwitted, although it can, evidently, lead to tenure, where every day is “poetry” month.