Illiteracy at the New York Times

Today I read this sentence in the book review section of the New York Times: “An interesting , sciencey explanation of the Y chromosome in all it’s vagary and confusion, and the strange trip through the behaviors of the life span of the males of many species.” This is from Mark Morris in By the Book. It is semi-literate in several ways, including not being a complete sentence, but what caught my eye was the grammatical error of using “it’s” instead of “its”. I assume Mr. Morris initiated the error, but think of how many pairs of editorial eyes failed to detect and correct it! And this is the book review section of the New York Times! Is there really no hope for civilization? I would fire the people responsible. Are they trying to promote illiteracy? I felt more despair at this than the many other outrages I have seen recently in this country.

10 replies
  1. says:

    The matter of , “its”, my dear Colin, is giving you fits. Well do I remember your own severe instruction on this tortured grammatical case.

  2. says:

    My comment was facetious in intent. Grammar aside, ” The New York Times” has been in decline for years—not least with respect to editorial opinion. “The Guardian” too, though relatively minor as the publication is, has lately had its own problems. One longs for the days of a Buckley or a Hitchens—-or for any outlet worthy of them. Proper prose and eviscerating wit seem increasingly confined to Blog Posts..

  3. says:

    Haven’t Sages of all Ages lamented the tendency of their times? Our times indeed seem exceptionally execrable, but I should like to hear from you exactly much more.

  4. says:

    Ahh, the inter-net, damn wretched thing— “long and tedious” as it is. Now then, back to philosophy proper, or to philosophy improper too. Our’s in America is an odious time, localized, perhaps. .But Is it from the resources of history or from philosophy that we should anticipate the worst?

  5. says:

    Wow, just when I was about to despair of the world, there pops up another world-class tennis event—pre the Australian Open. All the top players (absent Federer). Already great matches—- Rafa”s and Novak”s especially.


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