Tuesday, September 25, 2007

At it again

I picked up the new issue of Books in Canada while I was in Winnipeg. There are some excellent reviews in it, especially Jason Guriel's take on Dennis Lee and Barbara Nickel.

But then, there is something most puzzling at the end: a lengthy letter to the editor from David Solway, complaining about the review of his "non-fiction" book The Big Lie. It should be noted that David Solway is an editor at BiC, so to have his book reviewed in its pages is ethically dubious; to complain publicly about the content of that review is harebrained. This isn't the first time that Solway's shot himself in the foot by complaining about content in BiC in BiC's own letters page; I'm beginning to suspect that he suffers from some sort of dissociative disorder. It should also be noted that the reviewer is a right-wing Zionist intellectual (probably hand-picked by Solway's right-wing Zionist co-editors because one might suppose such a figure to be sympathetic to Solway's cause), but Solway manages to rationalise away Clifford Orwin's objections to his book by saying that he, along with just about everyone who is not David Solway--with the probable exception of Mark Steyn--, "just doesn't get it." Um, Dave, maybe it's you, bud.

This me-against-the-world shtick was mildly amusing--harmless, at least--when Solway was talking about poetry. In the realm of politics, it's much less funny. Solway should stick to what he's good at--writing mostly dull books of poetry in the voices of cleverly created personae (see my above suspicions of a dissociative disorder)--and leave political thought to those with political minds.

(Thanks to Lynda P. for the tip on the visuals!)

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