Nobody writes why we should read academic literary criticism.
Why read the classics? by Italo Calvino.
And isn't this a silly question?
And if anyone objects that it is not worth taking so much trouble, then I will quote Cioran (who is not yet a classic, but will become one):
While they were preparing the hemlock, Socrates was learning a tune on the flute. “What good will it do you,” they asked, “to know this tune before you die?”Everything we do is just something we do before we die.