And if you don't read and read deeply and if you don't
possess whether you memorize it or not, you don't powerfully and
deeply possess very strong works of literature and thought indeed,
then you will impoverish your thinking. And if we impoverish our
thinking, if it becomes any more adulterated than it has already in
the last third of the century, then I would fear for what is, after
all, most precious about this country...
...But I would fear for the political future of democracy in this large
and varied country if we really do stop reading deeply and holding on
to what we read, if we stop reading the best that has been written,
because then I think we will not think as clearly or as well and we
will be subject to demagoguery.
- Harold Bloom, circa 2000