31 Oct 2009

Holy Apology, Batman!

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Oops. I went off the handle on Tyler Cowen and Bryan Caplan because of their over-the-top denunciations of Michael Chabon’s decision to get his son circumcised. In particular, I couldn’t believe Bryan described reading the section as seeing “the face of evil.”

Well, I just read the relevant chapter last night, and yeah, I see what Bryan is saying. Chabon and his wife really do think it is nothing but pointless genital mutilation deriving from an absurd tradition, and basically (my interpretation) Chabon goes ahead with it because his self-loathing doesn’t give him the confidence to take a stand.

(BTW I really like the first four chapters of the book so far. I think Chabon has the amazing ability of grabbing on to an insight about society and then really drawing out its implications with an incredible but not affected vocabulary.)

I guess the next time I want to mock GMU professors, I should study this and this.*

* In case you’re clicking those links past Halloween 2009, I should explain that the site Cheeptalk is “dressing up” as MarginalRevolution. If my rudimentary understanding of the intertubes is right, in the future when they republish their site, the above posts will have the same content but will no longer look like MR.

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