Papers on Language & Literature

Literary history, theory, and interpretation.

Articles from Vol. 33, No. 4, Fall

Case Study in Social Neurosis; Quentin Compson and the Lost Cause
On June 2, 1910 a confused nineteen-year old Mississippian, two six-pound flat irons in his suit pockets, plunged into the Charles River near the Harvard campus. Quentin Compson left one suicide note before taking his life: for Shreve McCannon, his Harvard...
Intonation and Iambic Pentameter
While history has not been kind to Roman Jakobson's claiming all of poetics as a branch of linguistics (350), it would seem a priori that the study of meter and verse rhythm could use the support of linguistics, since meter is so technical a subject...
"The Most Fatal of All Faults": Samuel Johnson on Prior's Solomon and the Need for Variety; Matthew Prior's "Solomon on the Vanity of the World."
As literary critics we are always tempted to blur the categories of instruction and pleasure, to conclude that a work of literature is aesthetically excellent simply because we find it ideologically excellent. Perhaps no literary critic has ever managed...
"The Order of Time": Nationalism and Literary Anthologies, 1774-1831
In Jerusalem, William Blake declares, "Nations are Destroy'd, or Flourish, in proportion as Their Poetry Painting and Music, are Destroy'd or Flourish!" (plate 3). Blake, in his own inimitable way, is articulating one of the fundamental precepts of the...