I think I know academies quite well as I've been attending two of them for four years, and even though they are extremely different between each other, I see some points of coincidence about the topics of the questions I am answering at the moment.
In my opinion, academic experience is always very far away from aesthetic experience, and that's because arts and institutions don't get on well with each other at all. The Academy is like some kind of dictionary where everybody's worried about how much they know, about the length of their knowledge. But an artistic sensibility, as I see it, is always warried about the deepness, and rarely about the length of knowledge. Aesthetic experience doesn't deal with understanding. That's because it's based on mystery. Academy is always trying to explain, to use the language to explain clearly, but from the very early times of our century, literary language has been trying to learn how things are obscure to language, how they can't be revealed by it (that's Joyce, that's Beckett, aren't them?)
I remember an old phrase from Mallarme that said "I've read all the books". From him to our times no one can dare to repeat it sincerely. We have no access to tradition in our days, at least in a complete way. But institutions work with tradition and canon, and that's now old fashioned, and may be death. Intellectuals, at least in Argentina, are always trying to show, in an absolutely narcissist act, how much they know, how many books they have read, how many conferences they have given, how many universities in the world have invited them to give classes. Let me say I'm sick of it. I'm sick of thinking not about quality but about quantity.
I'd like to know other opinions about this topic.
I congratulate you for creating this place where all voices are heard in the same way, without looking at the age or the titles of people who want to express their thougths.