Jane Kramer once wrote a piece about a family farm in Perigord where the men had all gone and it was nothing but struggle.
The computer mechanized world we are facing may turn out to have wonders and be wonderful – look at the joys of modern rich New Yorkers compared to the 18th century
or even 1850 London – but I can’t make myself believe it.
Like all old people, our problem is the young, who are all vulgar media hypnotized (think of someone from 1900 contemplating the 1920’s – but then I think of Anna Akhmatova and the heroism necessary to face any of life’s real storms – her world DID dissappear – and her life became a nightmare that she fought through by believing, at least for public consumption, in her ideals of art and life.)
Is this just normal? Or IS this a time of crisis?
Would we care if someone from the court of Louis XVI started crying about the loss of manners and elegance?
The comment included this piece repr by DelanceyPlace
Steven Shapin in the London Review of Books, French cuisine is declining in its creativity and influence: http://campaign.r20.constantcontact.com/render?llr=yo7g7qbab&v=001IP2wby2XJMLhGQHkwLkmYMlOwNGJVO6LZKmKLrZUtBqdDFw_XXn0ZoY4j0qYvzRjXKkPtrsQhMZDj88YQ0gWAHkKYo7-TqraqUdJ5DW6nt3bwshaXjYn4zKV9ZUHBNLFlHMblnjFDhYPThqYgytxOA%3D%3D