Mediating Criticism

Mediating Criticism : Literary Education Humanized

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In the twentieth century, literature was under threat. Not only was there the challenge of new forms of oral and visual culture. Even literary education and literary criticism could sometimes actually distance novels, poems and plays from their potential audience. This is the trend which Roger D. Sell now seeks to reverse. Arguing that literature can still be a significant and democratic channel of human interactivity, he sees the most helpful role of teachers and critics as one of mediation. Through their own example they can encourage readers to empathize with otherness, to recognize the historical achievement of significant acts of writing, and to respond to literary authors' own faith in communication itself. By way of illustration, he offers major re-assessments of five canonical figures (Vaughan, Fielding, Dickens, T.S. Eliot, and Frost), and of two fascinating twentieth-century writers who were somewhat misunderstood (the novelist William Gerhardie and the poet Andrew Young).
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Product details

  • Paperback | 431 pages
  • 149.9 x 218.4 x 22.9mm | 589.68g
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • English
  • 1588111059
  • 9781588111050

Table of contents

1. Introduction; 2. Part I: Empathizing; 3. Summary; 4. 1. William Gerhardie's Chekhovism; 5. 2. Andrew Young's poetic secretion; 6. Part II: Recognizing achievement; 7. Summary; 8. 3. The impoliteness of The Waste Land; 9. 4. Henry Vaughan's unexpectedness; 10. 5. Decorum versus indecorum in Dombey and Son; 11. 6. Robert Frost's hiding and altering; 12. Part III: Responding to hopefulness; 13. Summary; 14. 7. Robert Frost and childhood; 15. 8. The pains and pleasures of David Copperfield; 16. 9. Fielding's reluctant naturalism; 17. Epilogue: Mediating critics and common [sic] readers [sic]; 18. Notes; 19. Bibliography; 20. Manuscripts; 21. Index
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