Pedantic: a definition

Posted on August 26, 2010

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“I despise people who underestimate the beauty of pedantry, they are thoroughly mindless people, weak in judgment.” – Robert Walser, Institute Benjamenta

This quote resides on the margins of one fellow blog Blographia Literia as an epigram, as the blog’s cipher. In it’s original context it is a joke (beauty of pedantry!). As an epigram it is depressing.  I read through a few posts of the blog and yea, the smell of pedantry wreaks to heaven. Blographia Literia lacks all inspiration and retains all the trash that is most boring in literary gossip, the trash of SELF-IMPORTANCE, and also the very common presumption that hovers around grad school papers, literary blogs and too many book reviews, the presumption that they are writing something SERIOUS and REAL, engendered in turn by x amount of books read. For it matters not that the pedant is intelligent and well read, that he logics soundly, that he fingers a corner of truth; these attributes are indeed necessary for the pedant’s existence. What counts, what ends up getting him avoided at parties and punched in the stomach at recess, is his shear and hopeless, artlessness. He not so much demonstrates a lack of humor as much as reveals the possession of a crushing and blinding humorlessness concerning his own small collection of facts and well petted literacy. The pedant bakes a cake that he alone can eat. It is a cake full of rocks.

But hold on! Do I also bake this gravely cake?

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Posted in: Definitions