Whoa -- people actually CARE what V.S. Naipul thinks about ANYTHING?

First of all, why get upset -- he's  also a racist -- a genuine "White Man's Burden" pro-colonialist, extolling the need for poor dark-skinned folks to have the English to come in and civilize them all (his folks included.)

But as to the dubious value of  men's opinions of women writers, I pass along this true example:

I was newly arrived and working in Houston some years ago and for some reason a pissant poseur (21 year old wannabe writer affecting a walking stick and something like a trilby) decided to attach himself to me and my wife.


One day he came up and talked about a book he'd  been reading -- I think it was The Earth is the Lord's,  Taylor Caldwell's novel about Genghis Khan, and he smarmed: 

"Wow.  You can really tell.  No woman can write like that."

My wife and I looked at each other and smiled, knowing our lives were about to improve, let it sit for a beat and said: "Taylor Caldwell IS a woman."

Never saw him again.


So much for that category of discernment -- men deciding the value of women's works of art or literature, an activity right up there in the Spuriousness Scale with men deciding women's reproductive options.
V.S. Naipul seems to be the sort of unreadable formalist whose appeal is limited to people who share his creaky myopic categorizing, and I have found him to be -- based on a very small sample -- highly rated pretty much only among the sort of people who might refer to a woman like Katy Sagal or Ruth Bader Ginsburg, or Ayn Rand, as "a Jewess."

Why anyone cares what Naipul has to say is only slightly more baffling than why anyone would care what Donald Trump has to say.


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