But he ( I assume) actually raises some points I’d like to address (via The Chronicle):

1. lagans – March 23, 2010 at 12:55 pm
With what background and experience with access to higher education does Anya Kamenetz reach her rather obvious conclusions? It’s as though she read
The Chronicle for a while and then regurgitated it into a book because she had access to publishers. Much like the criticism of her first book (from a Slate writer), we are left to ask, “it’s not that the author misdiagnose[s] ills that affect our society. It’s just that [she] lack[s] the perspective to add any great insight.”

First, yes, it’s true! In order to critique an institution, one must first be a *member* of that institution. It’s illegitimate to graduate from such an institution, or to visit 30 or 40 across the country, or to speak to dozens of people who have made their entire careers inside them, let alone to read hundreds of books and articles about them. “From within the institution” is the only proper direction of criticism.

Second, yes, my conclusions may indeed seem congruent with the concerns of a publication such as the Chronicle, in the context of a 1000-word piece published in the Chronicle. This might or might not have anything to do with the fact that the questions were asked, topics chosen, and piece edited, by a writer for the Chronicle, engaging in a well-known and highly illegitimate process known as journalism.

The 60,000 words contained in the actual book, of course, are irrelevant to any assessment of the potential obviousness of my conclusions–so obvious they are to you, my dear omniscient pseudonymous adversary.

And finally, I commend you for your dedication in doing a Google search to find what criticisms people made of me and my previous book four years ago. (By the way, that quote is a statement, not a question that you would be “left to ask”.) It should go without saying that anything anyone has ever said about me or my writing applies in perpetuity to everything I may now or ever in the future create, world without end, Amen.

2 Responses to “Ach, Futile and Bitter it is to Answer Pseudonymous Critics”

  1. Boone says:

    Hear hear, Anya, but don’t feed the trolls!

  2. admin says:

    You are correct, sir. I shall refrain from now on!

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