Conversation: A History of a Declining Art
Publisher: Yale University Press | ISBN: 0300123655 | edition 2007 | PDF | 357 pages | 1,3 mb
Miller traces the history of conversation from Aristotle to the present day, focussing particularly on the eighteenth century. For him, the Paris salons where Diderot opined and the London coffeehouses where Dr. Johnson imbibed between aphorisms represent conversation's apogee. In America, he feels, it fared less well, even before the contemporary menace posed by the Internet, iPods, and the polarization of the political sphere. Thoreau dismissed conversation as a waste of time, and Melville thought it was a tool of con men.