Editor’s Page

Editor’s Page

It has been said about Dissent’s editors and writers that we turn to culture only when politics is impossible for us, when the left is defeated or in the doldrums. Cultural criticism is an antidote for, or a diversion from, political pessimism and incapacity. But as soon as there is any sort of revival, the smallest sense of possibility, we are quick to turn away from literature, art, music, architecture, and popular culture, and come back to “real” politics as if to our natural vocation. (The easiest example of these changes is the large number of articles on mass culture that appeared in the magazine in the 1950s, dropping to near zero in the course of the sixties.)

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