Benedetto Croce's Poetry and Literature: An Introduction to Its Criticism and History

By Benedetto Croce; Giovanni Gullace | Go to book overview
Save to active project

III
Criticism and History of Poetry

1. The judgment of Poetry As a Synthesis of Sensibility and Thought
In the arguments developed so far, the whole pro-
cess of creation and re-creation has been rigorously
kept, as it ought to be, within the intuitive sphere, in
which it alone takes place and in which reflection (that
is, thought) is absent; for when thought seems to in-
tervene in directing the work of philology or in elimi-
nating theoretical biases and prejudices, it acts not on
poetry, but on obstacles of a conceptual nature which
eventually may hinder its course and its comprehen-
sion and is therefore always external to poetry.
Only with the judgment or criticism of poetry, with
true criticism, distinct from the immediate conscious-
ness of the beautiful and the ugly, does one move into
the sphere of thought and logic; and the concepts we
have been establishing, as well as the others we shall
establish further on, and in general all of the concepts
of philosophy which are useless to the poet, the evoca-
tor, and the lover of poetry become now essential and
vital because it is impossible to judge without cate-
gories of judgment.
Nevertheless, one may ask: "Why judge poetry: is
it not enough to create and enjoy it?" To this question
there is no better answer than to raise the same ques-
tion in a more general way: "Why judge things: why
does man think?" Put in these terms the question calls
for no answer, because this would amount to asking
why man is man and reality, reality.The contumelies against criticism. These contumelies
On the other hand, we cannot allow those who en- suffer somewhat from banality; but, since in our text
joy neither thinking nor judging poetry to confine we have recalled some of Victor Hugo's, we add the
themselves to producing and enjoying it; and we can- following of Flaubert's, which is a little wittier: "On

-119-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Benedetto Croce's Poetry and Literature: An Introduction to Its Criticism and History
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 210

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?