from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n.pl. The literary intelligentsia.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Well-educated, literary people; intellectuals who are interested in literature
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n.pl. Learned or literary men. See literatus.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Plural of literatus.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. the literary intelligentsia
The term literati, as I use it, refers to those, like Siegel, who have refused to even open the curtains in their ivory towers to see the wonderful, burgeoning literary world that has sprung up around them.
I think however that it is interesting to see you use the term literati, and picture my post as part of some larger struggle between one label group and another label group that I think breaks down as easily as my original post.
In his review of a John Grisham novel he almost writes: The prevailing assumption among the literati is still ... that popularity equals mediocrity.
I doubt the "literati" -- that is, the literary intelligentsia -- would create any constitution or doubt that anyone would nominate Updike, Franzen, DFW, DeLillo, etc to draft a new constitution.
There is probably only one name the literati would admit to recognising, and that's Dan Brown, in at number two with The Lost Symbol, the follow-up to Angels and Demons and The Da Vinci Code.
Azar Nafisi was also there, along with Matt Klam and his family, and sprinkled among the literati were the friends I had made over the past year volunteering at the writing center.
Cornelius Nepos, also, in his book, where he draws a distinction between a literate and a philologist, says that in common phrase, those are properly called literati who are skilled in speaking or writing with care or accuracy, and those more especially deserve the name who translated the poets, and were called grammarians by the Greeks.
JEAN PAUL betwixt their blanc-mange and oysters, without comprehending even the outermost rind of its in-meaning; so utterly ignorant are our so-called literati of any subject beyond the scope of a newspaper, that the name of SEATSFIELD sounded as strangely in American ears as if he had lately arrived from Herschel or Georgium Sidus in a balloon.
Milan; called the literati of the town about us, and gave me the pleasure of conversing with the Abate Cefarotti, who translated Offian; and the Professor Statico, whose attentions I ought never to forget.
Seen by many as the height of Chinese visual culture, painting is closely associated with the gentlemen scholars known as literati who lived and worked for the most part far from court in rural retreats.
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