Classic That Has Been Widely Used By Several Generations, This Book Consists Of Detailed Commentaries On Ten Famous English Poems From The Elizabethan Period To The Present Index
read á The Well Wrought Urn: Studies in the Structure of Poetry by Cleanth Brooks º > read the first essay ("The Language of Paradox," on Donne's "Canonization") on May 21, 2018.


"The Language of Paradox"
3: "the language of poetry is the language of paradox"; nod to Chesterton as a master of paradoxes; "paradox is the language appropriate and inevitable to poetry"
10: "Even the most direct and simple poet is forced into paradoxes far more often than we think, if we are sufficiently alive to what he is doing.
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11: In Donne's "Canonization," "the poet daringly treats profane love as if it were divine love"; "Donne takes both love and religion seriously"
17–18: "I submit that the only way by which the poet could say what 'The Canonization' says is by paradox.
More direct methods may be temptin One of the finest studies of poetry ever written.
The depth of understanding communicated in these 300 pages goes beyond impressive.
An essential read even for those who might think that the New Criticism is outdated.
i hate this :( :( :( :( Like Bloom, Brooks spends a lot of time (wasting yours in the process) grumbling about other aacademics he doesn't agree with.
Actually maybe a better term would be, he doesn't like.
Both of them are grating at times, petty and obsessed.


But, again like Bloom, he offers a lot of very interesting insights into whatever literary text he's looking at.


Brooks was one of the leading thinkers of the "New Criticism" movement in literary interpretation.
What is basic tenets are will be found in the text.
It's all rather fish bowl grumbling.
I'm outside of the privileged self important halls of academia and I really couldn't careless.
I wonder how often such Olympian types get down from the podium and actually try to write something creative themselves.
As anyone who labors at it knows, it is a very demanding discipline.
These t With the advent of New Formalism (Richard Strier, Marjorie Levinson) Cleanth Brooks is ready to be brought off the book shelf and reconsidered for the attention which he gives to the poem as an aesthetic object.
Of course, the idea of a "selfsufficient" aesthetic object is more of an ideal than a reality (often leading to a neglect of important political and contextual readings of a text), this caricature of critics like Brooks is being slowly and carefully being dismantled.
As Strier has pointed out, the historical enmity between formalists and historicists of various stripes has often been pointless and the best criticism has always combined close attention of the text with the context which informs and moulds it.


Brooks makes it clear that the "heresy of paraphrase" is something which everyone from ¹ The Well Wrought Urn: Studies in the Structure of Poetry ↠´ As far as literary criticism books go, this one was reasonably easy to read.
The language is clear, and Brooks doesn't introduce a bunch of unfamiliar terminology that the reader has to spend extra time looking up in order to understand what he's saying.
A highly essential study for poetry.
From what I understand, this is sort of the flagship of the closereading/ new critical movement.
As one might guess, it is full of polemical stuff about how one should value a poem as a poem and how one ought to recognize and appreciate the complexity and unity of poems, especially their imagery.
That said, the readings of the poems in the book are really strong and help one's appreciation of them, even if they do seem a little shall we say selfinvolved.

Do I wish I was as smart as Cleanth Brooks? Very yes.
Sigh.
I want to say, I wish I were smarter, but I wish I were a little less lazy might be more to the pointor at least the first step.
I do cop to this series of thoughtful essays being dry and sometimes difficult, although I was frequently aware of how much more difficult they could have been.


But: A great snapshot, in the context of my limited awareness, of a very particular time in the history of literary criticism, partly as recognized and discussed by Brooks himself and partly from my particular vantage.
And: a reintroduction to some old poetic chestnuts, some of which are or were familiar old friends to me and one or two of which I might actually never have read before.
So not unsatisfying, now that I'm done.

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