Emerson's Literary Criticism
Ralph Waldo Emerson has always fascinated students of criticism and of American literature and thought. Emerson& ’ s Literary Criticism supplies the continuing need for an anthology. This collection brings together Emerson& ’ s literary criticism from a wide variety of sources. Eric W. Carlson has culled both the major statements of Emerson's critical principles and many secondary observations that illuminate them. Here are more than sixty selections on thirty-five critical topics. Headnotes provide valuable background. Carlson relates Emerson& ’ s critical principles to his philosophy, social thought, and literary milieu, and also to biographical details. Intended for the student as well as the researcher, this book amply illustrates Alfred Kazin's contention that Ralph Waldo Emerson was "one of the shrewdest critics who ever lived."
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This new theory of evolution seemed to him to add scientific support to his own “
poetic ” or symbolic vision of the “ moral Sublime , " " the law of Laws , ” and his
faith that through the universe “ a great and beneficent tendency irresistibly ...
The development of these theories of art was accompanied by changes in the
methods of criticism : from “ judicial ” analysis and moral judgment to aesthetic
and organic concerns . “ Judicial criticism ” was a mode that Emerson outgrew .
This lack of moral feeling , attributed to " an obscure and profane life , ” kept him
from seeing the higher spiritual truth . Yet , because of his great intellect , he
represents the archetypal Knower in the moral evolution of Universal Man ,
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Emerson's literary criticismUser Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
Editor Carlson gathered this selection of Emerson's literary criticism in 1979. The great poet here ruminates on "Art as Experience," "The Creative Process," "Writers and Books," and more. Read full review