I have believed in the literary theory of ‘The Intentional Fallacy’ since I first encountered it in the mid 1960s. Whether I am right or wrong in this belief is, I accept, arguable but it is a sincere philosophy of mine. Not something to be covered briefly here. But what I will say, in the context of the Weirdtongue Palaver, is that this literary theory broadly suggests, inter alia, that once a book is posited in the audience arena, it then becomes the possession of all its readers, including its author who, I argue, has no more or no less fallibility, no more or no less rights, than any other reader. Hence my recent reviews or commentaries of some books for which I was responsible before they were posited in the audience arena, as well as my real-time reviewing since 2008 of “friends’” books such as those of Denis Diderot, John Cowper Powys, Thomas Mann, TQF etc.
I am not swayed from such a life-long belief by buckling, for authorial self-interest, under any ‘political’ pressure of fashions that, we are told here, seem to apply to book reviews these days.
And, as an aside, there can surely be no benefit to any author in keeping quiet about any reviews that cross a line of mockery or tendentiousness.
[Edit (8.00 am 19/9/13): at least one more comment below in comment stream.]