About Me

Kyle Smith (Twitter: @rkylesmith) is critic-at-large for National Review, theater critic for The New Criterion and the author of the novels Love Monkey and A Christmas Caroline. Type a title in the box above to locate a review.

Buy Love Monkey for $4! "Hilarious"--Maslin, NY Times. "Exceedingly readable and wickedly funny romantic comedy"--S.F. Chronicle. "Loud and brash, a helluva lot of fun"--Entertainment Weekly. "Engaging romp, laugh-out-loud funny"-CNN. "Shrewd, self-deprecating, oh-so-witty. Smith's ruthless humor knows no bounds"--NPR

Buy A Christmas Caroline for $10! "for those who prefer their sentimentality seasoned with a dash of cynical wit. A quick, enjoyable read...straight out of Devil Wears Prada"--The Wall Street Journal

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    What If Pretentiousness Were a Good Thing?

    By Kyle | August 15, 2016

    The case for pretension as a way we learn to be better people, in a Sunday column.

    Topics: Books | 2 Comments »

    2 Responses to “What If Pretentiousness Were a Good Thing?”

    1. K Says:
      August 15th, 2016 at 3:03 pm

      Fox, …… offers a defense of acting like someone you’re not. It’s the way we cross boundaries and discover new lands. Sometimes we look silly doing it, but that’s a small price to pay.

      Definition trouble.
      Def 1. Pretention: an aspiration or claim to a certain status or quality.

      Def 2. The use of affectation to impress; ostentatiousness.

      The reason pretension is frowned upon isn’t because it’s experimentation, it’s posing to impress others or to fit in with the cool kids. The opposite of going your own way even if it’s unpopular. True creatives don’t give a hoot what other’s think.

    2. JimmyC Says:
      August 15th, 2016 at 4:06 pm

      Well, congratulations, that’s probably the most New York City headline of all time.