Yet another tiresome article complaining about how they don't write books like they used to, by B.R. Myers in The Atlantic: A Reader's Manifesto - The Atlantic (July/August 2001)
Be warned, Myers goes on at tedious length (curious, I copied and pasted it into Word: 13, 000 words, 51 pages!!).
And as with all sweeping statements it just doesn't hold up. Myers does cite examples, but only from five or six writers, which doesn't go far to accounting for the hundreds of counter-examples anyone could come up with. S/he has a particular beef with Cormac McCarthy, Don Delillo and Paul Auster.
It's also full of sentences like "This is what the cultural elite wants us to believe: if our writers don't make sense, or bore us to tears, that can only mean that we aren't worthy of them." Sorry, but if you're wrting a 13,000 word essay about literature in The Atlantic, then YOU are one of the 'cultural elite' yourself.
Articles like this make me tear my hair out, yet I find myself compelled to read them nevertheless.