Randall Jarrell at home with Elfi, ca. 1964

Smart comments continue over at "My Jerry Saltz Problem." Number 28 offers a great quote by Randall Jarrell:

“Criticism demands of the critic a terrible nakedness: a real critic has no one but himself to depend on. He can never forget that all he has to go by, finally, is his own response, the self that makes and is made up of such responses — and yet he must regard that self as no more than the instrument through which the art is seen, so that the work of art will seem everything to him and his own self nothing.” — The Age of Criticism, 1952

Here is my essay, "Pictures from an Institution," on Jarrell's fictionalized critique of higher education and graduate life--republished in "Counterpoints: 25 Years of The New Criterion on Culture & the Arts" (Ivan R. Dee).