I am pushed to wondering again how it is to be known whether something
is "on" topic. I still think some of the most interesting things turn up by
chance and sometimes because other issues are raised. Right now, for
example, the notion Hayward spoke to when he said the reference to
Mylae was because all wars are one war leads to far more interesting
questions about the place of war in Eliot than many other things that turn
up here. Moreover, I have not noticed that nutcases are deterred by the
the direct addressing of Eliot. Some very nasty and pointless things have
been said in that context, and some very interesting ones in other
contexts. Some people seem quite enraged by other people's views on
Eliot and use that to say very unfortunate things. Is that on or off topic?
I think what would be far more helpful is if people made links so that there
were not the notion that we either address ourselves to the words in
poems as if they were outside the world OR address ourselves to what is
"OFF TOPIC." It is not really a simple binary, and it is not clear that
everyone shares either the definitions of topic or an interest in being
I also think that this forum does become a place where sometimes current
issues are discussed precisely because there is a sense of "knowing"
other members--not personally but as an intellectual community. And
those are people one might like to hear from or talk with in crises. I do not
see how that gets lumped with gratuitous nastiness that seems pretty
equal opportunity as far as the topics that elicit it.
Date sent: Sat, 22 Feb 2003 19:35:12 -0800
Send reply to: "T. S. Eliot Discussion forum." <[log in to unmask]>
From: Peter Montgomery <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: An alternative to being off topic
To: [log in to unmask]
From: INGELBIEN RAPHAEL
Yes, folks, we are OT. We are OT big time. No wonder we are, since the
trolls and nutcases on the list have been hyperactive over the last 24
hours, and some of us have been foolish enough to try and answer their
inanities. Believe me, folks, the vast majority of posters and lurkers out
there know what to think about the sorry lot who are trying to wreak havoc
on this list. We know who they are, and how they think (when they actually
think, that is).
IGNORING A TROLL IS THE MOST APPROPRIATE RESPONSE.
I agree wholeheartedly RaphaŽl.
In fact, if folks wanted I could probably arrange for us to have a
semi-monitored list that we could limit to discussion of Eliot
only, or whatever parameters we wanted.
I've had much experience at managing lists.
The ones that have someone sitting on them
to one degree or another, seem to be the happiest and