Literary critics do fulfill a very important role (as I shall try to show in a moment), but there seems to be a problem with much contemporary criticism, and especially with a certain type of academic literary criticism. One has the feeling that these critics do not really like literature - they do not enjoy reading. Worse even, if they were actually to enjoy a book, they would suspect it to be frivolous. In their eyes, something that is amusing cannot be important or serious.
- Simon Leys, The Hall of Uselessness