A distinction

A peaceful transfer of power is a column of the republic, & it’s appropriate for political leaders to cooperate graciously with Trump now. But there’s no comparable duty for writers and intellectuals. To the contrary, by temperament and profession, we’re the canaries in the coal mine. Our calling is to say what we see happening, as soon as we see it, as forcefully as we can express it.

Reading the comments, Romantic-era edition

In a letter to William Wordsworth, dated 11 December 1806, Charles Lamb described the failure of a play that Lamb had written and noticed that he didn’t rate positive and negative feedback equally:

A hundred hisses—damn the word, I write it like kisses—how different—a hundred hisses outweigh a 1000 Claps. The former come more directly from the Heart.