Caleb Smith

Caleb Smith

Caleb Smith is professor of English at Yale University and the author of The Prison and the American Imagination (2009) and The Oracle and the Curse (2013). He is working on a new book about disciplines of attention.

Essays

That Terrible Thoreau

Thoreau’s generative ambivalence, the reason we keep returning to him, comes from a specific move he makes, over and over again. Thoreau does something very particular for us. He recasts problems of political economy as ethical questions about the conduct of life.