Wednesday, July 29, 2009

For art's sake



In a famous aside Clement Greenberg observed 'Some day it will have to be told how 'anti-Stalinism', which started out more or less as 'Trotskyism', turned into art for art's sake, and thereby cleared the way, heroically, for what followed.' Actually, it was the other way around. Art for art's sake, chafing under the crude exigencies of proletariat realism and the Popular Front, identified the CP with the bourgeoisie and brilliantly reconstituted itself as Trotskyism.
J Hoberman, Vulgar Modernism

Nonsense of course outside of a couple of blocks in the Lower East Side, but an intriguing counterfactual could be spun out of this...

4 Comments:

Blogger The Importance Of Being Witnessed said...

A bit like when a homeless man is shouting on a street and you stop to listen to him.

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