What’s Wrong with “Dead Poets”

Posted on February 28, 2006
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The 1989 film starring Robin Williams won a fair raft of awards (as a jot of Google research shows), and I presume it was recieved as an evocative defense of poetry. It is perhaps more properly a defense of acting.

The film well excoriated the driest and stodgiest scholars of poetry, and not as an invented nemisis but a real type. That type has no business teaching poetry or anything else; but such people exist, and one does not wish to be found among them, so one’s sympathies slide toward Williams et al.

Alas that Williams’ character cannot think of any better ennervation for poetry than tearing pages out of books and running around in circles. Read more