Wednesday, September 17, 2014

More About Lovecraft

I see that S.T Joshi has written this blog entry:
September 16, 2014 —A Few More Delicate Words on Laura Miller
Here are my thoughts:

After being involved in a rather pointless (as in having no real point) Facebook argument over these issues, I have reached a conclusion. Different readers of Lovecraft concentrate on different aspects of Lovecraft. Readers of Lovecraft's writings concentrate on those aspects of the man and his works that they wish to concentrate on. Some seem to concentrate on Lovecraft's racism, while others seem to concentrate on his imaginative and creative genius. Those who do concentrate on Lovecraft's imaginative and creative genius are often put into the category of "Lovecraft defenders" by those concentrating on his racism.

Furthermore, I have come to believe that there is no real resolution to this problem, if it is indeed a problem at all, because it is a matter of different readers coming away with different reactions to and opinions about Lovecraft and his works. Unfortunately, there are those out there who seem to think that all readers of Lovecraft must share their own reactions to and opinions about the man and his works.

As for the stink over the WFA trophy, I do think S.T. Joshi is being sensible regarding his suggestion that recipients of the WFA trophy who find the form of the trophy genuinely offensive/intolerable/repugnant/whatever should simply give it back. Otherwise, these people sound like nothing but miserable whiners. As the old saying goes, actions speak louder than words.

Now, someone over on a Facebook thread about S.T. Joshi's blog post did point out that Joshi has "quite a line in invective". Perhaps he does, but I say he is using the same sort of tone and language many figures in the genre writing community use when involved in this sort of genre world brouhaha. 'Tis nothing new. To be quite honest, I've seen worse.
(As if "Lovecraft defender" is not meant in a reproachful manner! It could be argued that such a label implies not only a defender of Lovecraft, but a defender of his racism as well.)

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