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Friday, March 30, 2012

Essay topic: Adrienne Rich or Earl Scruggs-- Who had the greater impact on American Culture?

I like "Diving into the Wreck" just fine:
We are, I am, you are
by cowardice or courage
the one who find our way
back to the scene
carrying a knife, a camera
a book of myths
in which
our names do not appear.


  but I have to say that I never felt included in Rich's work, probably because I wasn't meant to be.

Scruggs, on the other hand, always came across as warm, sincere and engaged.Have a look at the video of him playing "Love is Just a Four Letter Word" with Joan Baez here. In the end I suppose it is an absurd comparison, and a pointless exercise, but the juxtaposition of their obituaries is the sort of thing that makes me feel just a little encouraged by the idea of American culture. To the extent that we can say that we have produced positive things it seems to me that those things have been the sort of restless and experimental things that characterized the work of both Scruggs and Rich, and it is worth noting that those qualities can be found in both the chilly world that Adrienne Rich described, and in the more inviting sensibility of Mr. Scruggs.

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