On ‘The Written World’, by Kevin Power

Tom Hennigan at The Dublin Review of Books:

What I take from this is not so much that Power is a radical but rather that he believes style is not a substitute for ideas, nor should it be used as an evasive measure to obscure areas of darkness or deployed as a bully in debate. His own clear prose works hard at allowing him to do some expansive thinking in what is still a concise amount of space. In the longer essays various big ideas (example: the Apocalypse) are explored in some depth with a lot of ground crisply covered in relatively few pages.

If his style is clear so is his thinking. Now a university professor, he is versed in the culture wars that consume the humanities, but academia is not his audience here. There is no jargon. In “Pretentiously Opaque” he has good fun laughing at literary theory (“Of course, mocking cherry-picked gobbets of fatuous prose is one of the cheapest tactics available to the enemy of Theory”).

more here.