Mere Literature, and Other Essays

Mere Literature, and Other Essays

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Mere Literature, and Other Essays

Mere Literature, and Other Essays

Read FREE!

Excerpt

A SINGULAR phrase this, "mere literature" the irreverent invention of a scientific age. Literature we know, but "mere" literature? We are not to read it as if it meant sheer literature, literature in the essence, stripped of all accidental or ephemeral elements, and left with nothing but its immortal charm and power. "Mere literature " is a serious sneer, conceived in all honesty by the scientific mind, which despises things that do not fall within the categories of demonstrable knowledge. It means nothing but literature , as who should say, "mere talk," "mere fabrication," "mere pastime." The scientist, with his head comfortably and excusably full of knowable things, takes nothing seriously and with his hat off, except human knowledge. The creations of the human spirit are, from his point of view, incalculable vagaries, irresponsible, to be regarded . . .

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