Northrop Frye Four Essays

Harold Bloom contributes a fascinating and highly personal preface that examines Frye's mode of criticism and thought (as opposed to Frye's criticism itself) as being indispensable in the modern literary world.Except for the comically inadequate introduction by Harold Bloom, this book is a window to a whole new way of seeing the literary universe.The novel, a relatively recent form, a point Frye makes crystal clear in his later essay, "Specific Continuous Forms," presents a hero far removed from myth and romance.

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It might take a while to get through and it might require you to convert a lot of Frye's work into shorter notes an Except for the comically inadequate introduction by Harold Bloom, this book is a window to a whole new way of seeing the literary universe.

It might take a while to get through and it might require you to convert a lot of Frye's work into shorter notes and diagrammatic notations, just to keep up with the density of the text, but at the end of it you will be exposed to an almost cosmic vision of Literature, comparable to that at the end of Paradiso.

He inevitably shrinks again, passes right through one of the grids and disappears.

I think the first time I read Frye I felt like the shrinking man standing before the giant grid. To buy his theory, we have to agree that literature is based on myth.

Employing examples of world literature from ancient times to the present, he provides a conceptual framework for the examination of literature.

In four brilliant essays on historical, ethical, archetypical, and rhetorical criticism, he applies "scientific" method in an effort to change the character of criticism from the casual to the causal, from the random and intuitive to the systematic.That's not to say that he possesses the answer (it's literary theory, after all)--but that he has an answer.Much like "42," though, sometimes answers arrive without any question requiring their presence.It is worth the effort just for the sheer ambition of the work and for the bit of that ambition that will rub off on you, even if you reject everything else contained here.Only Joyce might be able to teach you about the scope of literature in a more inspiring fashion than this poet-critic.…I vividly remember my reaction, when as an undergraduate, I read Northrop Frye’s Anatomy of Criticism as a required text in a course I was taking.After adding Frye's notions of symbol, myth and its corresponding imagery for each of the five modes, the complexity of the book begins to emerge.... Sets out its task in terms reminiscent of Kant's assertion that "philosophy stands in need of a science" in the Critique of Pure Reason: "If criticism exists, it must be an examination of literature in terms of a conceptual framework derivable from an inductive survey of the literary field. Both Kant and Frye strike me as latter day Miltons, who A superior display of erudition.If you can get past the sense of being dwarfed, it's a worthwhile read. As someone who refrained from it for six years due to inadequate education in literature, I'll just give out a (surprisingly) short survival list of literature prerequisites for this book:1) Whatever literature Jung put you into reading. As someone who refrained from it for six years due to inadequate education in literature, I'll just give out a (surprisingly) short survival list of literature prerequisites for this book:1) Whatever literature Jung put you into reading. The word 'inductive' suggests some sort of scientific procedure. Sets out its task in terms reminiscent of Kant's assertion that "philosophy stands in need of a science" in the Critique of Pure Reason: "If criticism exists, it must be an examination of literature in terms of a conceptual framework derivable from an inductive survey of the literary field. Both Kant and Frye strike me as latter day Miltons, who, within their respective fields, desire to assert Eternal Providence, And justify the ways of God to men.” [The film, now that I think about it, may be the ultimate male nightmare.:] This poor guy has one disaster after another until he is being chased around a basement by a cat whose size is now monstrous compared to him.In the final scene, he has somehow crawled onto a window sill and stands in front of the screen looming before him.This is the groundbreaking book that officially introduced Jungian archetype theory into the realm of literary criticism. That should include the Golden Bough, Iliad, Odyssey, Faust, Bib This is the groundbreaking book that officially introduced Jungian archetype theory into the realm of literary criticism. That should include the Golden Bough, Iliad, Odyssey, Faust, Bible, Greek tragedy and Greek comedy, some other readings in mythology, the more the merrier.2) Milton, Dante, Spencer, some novels, the more the merrier.3) Shakespeare. The word 'inductive' suggests some sort of scientific procedure. Frye is of course much more humble about it than Milton (but who isn't?), and, in addressing his miltonic-kantian task, offers this volume as a mere attempt to annotate T. Eliot's ideas (18) (which ideas I regard as thoroughly reactionary and dullard).

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