Special Christmas Edition Part 2: A Christmas Story

Since it happens that I posted something trying to defend A Christmas Carol against the infuriating, right-wing misreading of it offered on NPR, I might as well go belatedly to bat for that other Christmas movie marathon classic, A Christmas Story. I should note that in our family, A Christmas Carol was required viewing every December 24th until my protests led us to switch.

Twisty, in that inimitable manner of hers, takes the film to task in a post I have just read. My response is here. The most important reason to mention this is to demonstrate the necessity of intuitive criticism. I like public schools, I’m opposed to consumerism, I have no interest in guns, and I don’t like electric woman’s-leg lamps. However, I do like this movie. There is a stubbornly predictable form of pseudo-radical criticism that suggests most people are hypocrites — they claim to hate the status quo, but then they worship it in the movie palaces. It’s sad to say that this charming reading of people is usually supported by a very hasty and undiscerning interpretation of the cultural artifacts in question.

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