Theory of literature wellek and warren

A history of literature during the Middle Ages in England which neglects the vast amount of writings in Latin and Anglo-Norman gives a false picture of England's lit- erary situation and general culture. But most promoters of this scientific invasion into literary study have either confessed failure and ended with skepticism or have com- forted themselves with delusions concerning the future successes of the scientific method. Serious art implies a view of life which can be stated in philosophical terms, even in terms of systems. According to this school of thought, even Julius Caesar and The Merchant of Venice are supposed to be nothing but a hotchpotch of passages by Marlowe, Greene, Peele, Kyd, and several other playwrights of the time.

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It is not very easy to determine the point at which literature written in America ceased to be "colonial English" and became an independent national literature.

Theory of literature

Chatterton's poems are neither worse nor better for having been written in the eighteenth century, a point which is frequently forgotten by those who in their moral indignation punish with contempt and oblivion the theroy proved to be a later production. If many second- or even tenth-rate authors of the past are worth study, a first- or even second-rate author of our time is worth studying, too.

Yet if we were to break up Words- worth's own order of the poems and print them chronologically we would run into great difficulties as to the version we had to reprint. The word implies calculation, intention, and is yheory applied to specific, rather restricted doctrines or pro- grams.

Theory of Literature - Wikipedia

Its contents were based on their shared understandings of literature. His- torically, it has been used to include not only all literary and linguistic studies but studies of all products of the human mind. If all truth is conceptual and propositional, then the arts — even the art of literature — can't be forms of truth. Apparently, for an Elizabethan audience, a melancholiac, something as described by Dr. There is, then, the further distinction between the study of the principles and criteria of literature and the study of the concrete literary works of art, whether we study them in isolation or in a chronological series.

Theory of Literature [by] René Wellek and Austin Warren

As early asWilhelm Dilthey worked out the distinction between the methods of natural science and those of history in terms literzture a contrast theoey explanation and comprehension. All these distinctions between literature and non-literature which we have discussed — personal expression, realization and exploitation of the medium, lack of practical purpose, and, of course, fictionality — are restatements, within a framework of semantic analysis, of age-old aesthetic terms such as "unity in variety," "disinterested contemplation," "aesthetic distance," "framing," and "invention," "imitation.

We would conclude that, in most cases, it is advisable to edit the MS which is adjudged to be nearest the author's own without attempting the reconstruction of some hypothetical "original. Pilgrim and Everyman undertake to be mankind. The term "comparative" literature is trouble- some and doubtless, indeed, one of the reasons why this im- portant mode of literary study has had less than the expected academic success.

Neither view, in isolation, can possibly seem acceptable. Collaboration sometimes poses almost hopeless tasks to the literary detective. Literature is neither a series of unique works with nothing in common nor a series of works enclosed in time-cycles of Romanticism or Classi- cism, the age literafure Pope and the age of Wordsworth. Views Read Edit View history. There Wellek met Austin Warren — [8]an American literary scholar who considered himself an "old New Critic ".

On the whole, the reading of a history of aesthetics or poetics leaves one with the impression that the nature and the function of literature, so far as they can be put into large general con- 19 20 Theory lietrature Literature ceptual terms, for comparison and contrast with other human activities and weloek, have not basically changed.

The two are distinct activities: The principle of characterization in literature has always been defined as that of combining the "type" with the "individual" — showing the type in the individual or the individual in the type.

The statements in a novel, in a poem, or in a drama are not literally true 5 they are not logical propositions. Poetic lan- guage organizes, tightens, the resources of everyday language, and sometimes does even violence to them, in an wagren to force us into awareness and attention.

Still, whatever the mixed modes apparent upon an exami- nation of concrete literary works of art, the distinctions between the literary use and the scientific use seem clear: Their achievements may have become obscured by the theoretical and practical tri- umphs of the modern physical sciences j but they are nevertheless real and permanent and can, sometimes with some modifications, easily be resuscitated or renovated.

The original publication of Theory of Literature consists of twenty chapters set in five sections based on thematic similarities; [16] one chapter and section was removed in later editions. It will welek argued that what wrllek authors profess to be a literary theory should be seen rather as a literaturee of literature. Since then, the eighteenth century has been accepted into good and regular standing as conventional literary history and has even become fashionable, since it appears to offer an escape into a more gracious, more stable, and more hierarchic world.

Full text of "Theory of literature"

We can only read, enjoy, appreciate it. Thelry reception of Theory of Literature was mixed. Language, meanwhile, they describe as "quite literally the material of the literary artist"; although a work is influenced by language, the writer's style, the use of communicative language, may influence language. We recognize the typological again in the character books of the seventeenth century and in the comedies of Moliere.

One cannot doubt the continuity between Greek and Roman literatures, the Western medieval world, and the main modern literatures j and, without minimizing the im- portance of Oriental influences, especially lterature of the Bible, one must recognize a close unity which includes all Europe, Russia, the United States, and the South American literatures.

Both believed that "scholarship" and "criticism" ttheory compatible 5 both refused to distinguish between "contemporary" and past literature.

5 thoughts on “Theory of literature wellek and warren”

  1. I am final, I am sorry, but, in my opinion, there is other way of the decision of a question.

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