The Public Interest

DISSENT AND REPLY - The Malignant Objectors

John Beardsley , Robert A. Levine , Ronald Lee Fleming & Wolf Von Eckardt

Winter 1982

HEAVEN knows, it is high time our breathless modern avant-garde looked back. It would realize that nobody much is following, let alone bringing up the rear. But Stalker and Glymour’s argument, I am afraid, is not going to cause modern artists, and the small but vocal industry of critics, curators, and dealers which sustains them, to pause and reflect. On the contrary, such intolerant and ignorant generalizations will only widen the unfortunate gap in our society between elitist culture and popular culture, between artists and “the people.” Besides, intolerant and ignorant catering to the baser, iconoclastic instincts of the common man can only lead to censorship and bad art, such as völkische Kunst and socialist realism.

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