The Romantic Survival: A Study in Poetic Evolution

By John Bayley | Go to book overview
Save to active project

CHAPTER VII
Ghost or Machine?

CRITICAL ATTITUDES towards poetry today have been much influenced by two events: the rediscovery of the Metaphysicals, and the development in the universities of a School of English Literature. There is a connection between the two. As we have seen, Hulme, Pound, and Eliot all emphasised in their various ways what might be called the scholarship of poetry. The poet must be precise and he must be learned; 'poetry', says Pound, 'should be as well written as prose', and the implication of tile remark (though it turns out to be less arresting than it sounds) is that poetry should be both complex and homely, cerebral, conscientious, and rich in references to a general body of scholarship and idea: that it should, in fact, be possible to get a great deal out of it. These requirements were most obviously met by Dryden and the Metaphysical poets, and they are also the kind of qualities which a student of poetry--irrespective of his natural taste and acumen--could most readily perceive, or be induced to perceive. To get a great deal out of a poem is the justification for academic study of it, and an English School tends to set up, in self-defence, professional and mental disciplines which will compare with those required in other subjects. If poetry is to be read as part of an academic course, moreover, the pleasure of reading it becomes alto

-67-

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
The Romantic Survival: A Study in Poetic Evolution
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
/ 231

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?