Here’s a Glorious Video of Camille Paglia Talking About Susan Sontag

camille paglia wgbh susan sontag

Earlier this morning, it was brought to my attention that today is Camille Paglia’s birthday, WHOM I LOVE. At last, I thought, the perfect opportunity to post this WGBH interview with Camille Paglia from the early 1990s! In it, she responds to Susan Sontag’s claim that Sontag had never even heard of Camille Paglia. That is completely insane, according to Camille Paglia, because who hasn’t heard of Camille Paglia, inquired Camille Paglia. My point is: Camille Paglia…and also Susan Sontag! Two favorite intellectual tastes that taste great together!

*Sigh* I love this. I love all of this so very much.

I love that there was a time when Entertainment Weekly would do an interview with one of the great minds of 20th-century cultural criticism, Susan Sontag, and I love that Susan Sontag emphatically does not read Entertainment Weekly, so please, ask her a direct question.

I love that there was a cultural environment that would clutch their pearls at Sontag’s words and waited with bated breath for Paglia’s rejoinder. It’s the common celebrity feud improved upon by pretention.

I love the way Camille Paglia responds with her Hawksian rat-a-tat, and I love that she brought Anne Bancroft into this, even if I don’t understand quite why. If that’s the game we’re playing, though, I’ll bring her into it, too:

anne bancroft great expectations

What a fun game!

Mostly, though, I love it when Camille Paglia declares “I am the Sontag of the 90s.” I want to use it whenever applicable, which is everywhere and always.

So happy birthday, Camille Paglia! And if you’re taking requests for who to shittalk in the intelligentsia, my vote’s for Žižek!

One Response

  1. The Bancroft reference was to her role in “The Turning Point” — rival ballerinas played by Bancroft and Shirley MacLaine.


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