*

     

I hope that I have not done disservice to this very good book by focusing at length on these issues. I would like to repeat and to extend the point that not only is the error not specific to this volume but that it is flatly worse in the same and many other ways in many other texts. It represents a general malaise in English literary criticism on “Japanese” subjects in English literature, and to a degree on “Asian” subjects in general, although in recent years some fine work has appeared on Pound and China, much but not all of it by Chinese scholars. Some explicators represent these and like errors with a glad dash of pomposity tossed in as a side-dish, but nothing close to pomposity here, only careful attempts to explicate, at worst a few unthinking reproductions of an ignorant old dust which inheres in the air, illiterate intertextuality, overdetermined from the start. The merits of the individual essays and the strengths of the collection as a whole outweigh shortcomings encompassed in the conceptual field of my sense of its one collective weakness.

      Two corrections in closing: Sturge Moore was fifteen, not “forty years Pound’s elder” (80); and the author of Modernism and the Museum, which includes scholarship as extensive, cultural history as detailed, and analyses as intelligent as any ever written about Imagism in its avant-garde contexts, including particularly Pound, in particular in relation to Asian subjects (103-63), is Rupert Richard Arrowsmith, not Richard Arrowsmith (11 Works Cited; 185). He is Rupert Arrowsmith in his forthcoming critical edition of William Empson’s long lost The Face of the Buddha.