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In Praise Of Philistines

'Russians have, or had, a special name for smug philistinism - poshlust. Poshlism is not only the obviously trashy but mainly the falsely important, the falsely beautiful, the falsely clever, the falsely attractive. To apply the deadly label of poshlism to something is not only an esthetic judgment but also a moral indictment. The genuine, the guileless, the good is never poshlust. It is possible to maintain that a simple, uncivilized man is seldom if ever a poshlust since poshlism presupposes the veneer of civilization. A peasant has to become a townsman in order to become vulgar. A painted necktie has to hide the honest Adam's apple in order to produce poshlism.'
-Vladimir Nabokov (1899 - 1977)

They breed like rabbits everywhere-
The ever happy philistines-
Those trashy Poets of the Year,
Who smash great verse to smithereens.

They try to sound like Keats or Cummings,
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Daniel Partlow 10 April 2007

The bitter criticisms of a friend are to be prefered to the praise of a flatterer... You make a decent point, but my father once taught me not to mock someone elses piety - whether I thought it was false or not. To them it is quite grave, and perhaps their words will have an affect on someone else who needs them.

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Ted Sheridan 16 February 2007

To be or not to be........a poet or a dunce. Should we make it illegal to be both? You raise a good argument with this one.

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