Art Versus the Academy: An Email Debate
John Haber, Danyll Wills, Andrew Towne, and Christopher Bernard
[Total Pages: 31]
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This past May I found a review of Mark McGurl's new book, The Program Era: Postwar Fiction and the Rise of Creative Writing, in a recent issue of The New Criterion that so well reflected my experience of creative writing programs and the writers that emerge from them~to say nothing of writers workshops and writers groups and what might be called the collectivization of writing~that I sent along a link to it to a number of my literary colleagues.

The responses, especially one series that turned into a very long thread of emails dashed off between more urgent tasks, proved so engaging, for myself at least, that I thought it might prove of some use to make them public. So, below, with some mostly minor

editing and fixes, you will find most of the emails of that exchange, leaving out only a few brief replies that were erased early on.

The principal emailers were the New York-based art critic and theorist John Haber; composer, writer, and theorist Andrew Towne (San Diego); China scholar and writer on technology (part American, part English; now based in Hong Kong) Danyll Wills; and myself.

~Christopher Bernard

The Exchange

Hello my fellow writers and others concerned with the state of modern language and letters,