New Criticism by Levone


									  New Criticism

Writing a New Critical Paper
Writing: (Textbook: p. 47)
 1. Central idea and Thesis statement;
 2. All the other elements should be
  analyzed in terms of the thesis
 3. Quotations;
 4.the use of lit. terms;
 5. Style: first person (? Or third-person)
  and authoritative.
     (personification+ action, alliteration; sensual images )
      Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
“     Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
      Conspiring with him how to load and bless
      With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves
A     To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
      And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
U     To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
T     With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
U     And still more, later flowers for the bees,
      Until they think warm days will never cease,
      For Summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy
N”      cells.
     Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
     Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
     Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
TO   Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
     Or on a half-reap'd furrow sound asleep,
A    Drows'd with the fume of poppies, while thy
U    Spares the next swath and all its twined
T      flowers:
     And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
U    Steady thy laden head across a brook;
M    Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
N”   Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.
     Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where
       are they?
“    Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,--
TO   While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
     And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
     Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
A    Among the river sallows, borne aloft
U    Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
T    And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly
U    Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
M    The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
N”   And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.
     Thesis Statement:

“    Nature runs in cycles, but Keats’s “To
TO    Autumn” focuses on the sensual beauties
      of autumn in its very moments--but not what
      comes before or after.
U    Autumn’s beauties are shown in its bountiful
       harvest and storage, in its various and
T      transient music, both of which, though
       suggesting winter and nearing death, are
U      enhanced and prolonged by the mellifluous
M      sounds and long vowels.
     1. the sensual beauties of autumn in its very
“      moments--early, mid and late autumn with
       their specific kinds of beauty.
TO     A. fruition
       B. storage
       C. music
     2. Transience vs. prolonging the effects
U      A. examples of transience + prolongment:
T         1. From “never cease” to last oozing, bloom the
            soft-dying day, stubble-plains, gnats
U         2. Actions gets smaller and smaller, but
            accumulated to show autumn’s richness
M    B. effects prolonged by the mellifluous
N”     sounds and long vowels.
     C. Long sentences throughout the whole poem.
Keats’ Life and world around
the time of composing the poem, 1819

 Restoration of the monarchy in France in
 His brother Tom's death in December, 1818
 Keats wrote a large amount of poems from
  1819 to 1820; his second volume of poems
  appeared in July 1820.
 Soon afterwards, by now very ill with
  tuberculosis, he set off with a friend to Italy,
  where he died the following February (1821).
Other Views of “To Autumn”
 “The whole point of Keats’ great and
  (politically) reactionary book was not to enlist
  poetry in the service of social and political
  causes. . .but to dissolve social and political
  conflicts in the mediations of art and beauty.(J.
  MacGann, 1985: 53)
 “What Keats said to his readers—and his
  rulers—is comparable to what Galileo is
  reputed to have muttered after his forced
  recantation to the Inquisition: “And yet it
  moves.” (Hawthorn 1996: 176, 179)
 A feminist reading of the presentation of
  autumn as a woman.
New Criticism: Conclusion
 The relationship between
   Theory and Criticism

                    how you act
the ground beneath your feet; the window
 or lens through which you look at the
New Criticism: Conclusion (2)
 Criticism:
The method of close reading (text-and-
 only- the-text approach): working
 from parts to whole and vice versa.
Key words in New Criticism:
 ambiguities, paradox, irony, tension.
Theoretic Basis of New Criticism:
Liberal Humanism
1.    文學有永恆的價值﹒
2.    文學的意義存在於文本內;不須放在社會、
3.    因此﹐文本需要細讀﹒
4.    人性基本上是不改變的﹒
5.    每個人都有其獨特本質﹒
6.    文學的目的是改進人生、傳播人道價值﹒
7.    形式和內容必須融合成一有機體﹒
8.    誠於中﹐行於外-作家的誠懇表達在他用字
9.    文學貴在具體表現(or enact).
10.   批評者的責任是在做作品和讀者中的媒介﹒
New Criticism: Conclusion (3)
 Theory:
1. Do you think that poetry can be autonomous,
  detached from its social and historical
  environment? That literature can have
  universal meanings?
2. Do you think that we definitely can find out
  textual unity?
3. For New Critics, the unity in the best literary
  work is achieved through paradox, irony and
  ambiguity. Do you agree?
4. Do you think that we can determine our life?
4. Do you agree that life is filled with paradoxes,
  conflicts and ambiguities?
Criticism of New Criticism
 它提供一個簡便的教學方式應付不斷增
 詩導致政治惰性﹐因而也是屈從政治現
  狀的祕方 (T. Eagleton)
 A text can be open to different
 Close reading is not the only way of
  reading; nor are ambiguity, tension, etc.
  the only aesthetic standard.
The theories after New Criticism:
Five Main Points
 Politics is pervasive, 任何事情都是政治
 Language is constructive, 語言為建構,
 Truth is provisional, 真理是臨時建構,
 Meaning is contingent, 意義是因時/地
 Human nature is a myth 人性的普遍性

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