* There’s “No proof music lessons make children any smarter.”
* “The Novel as Math Problem: As a formal exercise, Paul Auster’s 4321 is impeccable. As a story, it’s curiously cold.” I’ll pass.
* An excellent, important point: “Every movement…has a smart version and a stupid version, I try to (almost) always consider the smart version. The stupid version is always wrong for just about anything.” I have sometimes been guilty of attacking the stupid version.
* “Elena’s career exemplifies two cultures in women’s writing that are not supposed to mix: the unimpeachably high, where abstract desires are worked out in texts accessible only to educated elites, and the thrillingly low—writing that, driven by big, vulgar passions, grips the popular imagination but is not to be taken seriously.”