[Humanist] 27.192 Trilling's words?
Humanist Discussion Group
willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Sun Jul 7 22:38:35 CEST 2013
Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 27, No. 192.
Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
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Date: Mon, 08 Jul 2013 06:17:37 +1000
From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>
Subject: Trilling's words
This is a query about the actual source of a remembered quotation
remembered to be from one of Lionel Trilling's essays. I'd be very
grateful for an accurate pointer. It is something close to this: "Don't
ask whether you like a book but whether the book likes you", and it
likely occurs in the context of some of the great formidable people like
Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Strindberg. In "On the teaching of modern
literature", in Beyond Culture, Trilling remarks of the works he was
> [They] have been involved with me for a long time - I invert the
> natural order not out of lack of modesty but taking the cue of W. H.
> Auden's remark that a real book reads us. I have been read by Eliot's
> poems and by Ulysses and by Remembrance of Things Past and by The
> Castle for a good many years now, since early youth. Some of these
> books at first rejected me; I bored them. But as I grew older and
> they knew me better, they came to have more sympathy with me and to
> understand my hidden meanings. Their nature is such that our
> relationship has been very intimate.
The quotation I am looking for is close to the above but this isn't it.
Willard McCarty (www.mccarty.org.uk/)
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