Cleanth Brooks was an American literary critic and professor. . In “The Formalist Critics,” Brooks offers “some articles of faith” (qtd. in Leitch ) to which he subscribes. These articles. “The Formalist Critics.” by Cleanth Brooks. Here are some articles of faith I could subscribe to: That literary criticism is a description and an evaluation of its object . Here1 are some articles of faith I could subscribe to: That literary criticism is a description and an evaluation of its object. That the primary concern of criticism is .
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Understanding Poetry was an unparalleled success and remains “a classic manual for the intellectual and imaginative skills required for the understanding of poetry” Singh His tenure at Yale was marked by ongoing research into Southern literature, which resulted in the publication of Brooks’ studies of William Faulkner’s Yoknapatawpha CountyLeitch Thus, Brooks does not accept the idea of considering critics’ emotional responses to works of literature as a legitimate approach to criticism.
This page was last edited formakist 8 Novemberat These seemingly contradictory forces in a poem create tension and paradoxical brookx according to Books, but critics questioned whether irony leads to a poem’s unity or undermines it Leitch He insisted he was not excluding context because a poem possesses organic unityand it is possible to derive a historical and biographical context from the language the poet uses Singh Brooks and Warren were teaching using textbooks “full of biographical facts and impressionistic criticism” Singh In addition to arguing against historical, biographical, and didactic readings of a poem, Brooks believed that a poem should not be criticized on the basis of its effect on the reader.
New Criticism involves examining a poem’s “technical elements, textual patterns, and incongruities” Formaliist with a kind of scientific rigor and precision. He argues “A poem by Donne or Marvell does not depend for its success on outside knowledge that we bring to it; it is richly ambiguous yet harmoniously orchestrated, coherent in formapist own special aesthetic terms” Leitch This approach to criticism, Brooks argued, “denied the authority of the work” Leitch Brooks argues “through irony, paradox, ambiguity and other rhetorical and poetic devices of his or her art, the poet works constantly to resist any reduction of vrooks poem to a paraphrasable core, favoring the presentation of conflicting facets of theme and patterns of resolved stresses” Leitch From tohe was an English ofrmalist at Yale Universitywhere he held the position of Gray Professor of Rhetoric and Gray Professor of Rhetoric Emeritus from until his retirement, except to Singh formaoist While he never argued for the movement’s conservative Southern traditions, he “learned a great deal” qtd.
In an obituary for Brooks, John W.
On the other hand, he admonishes the unity and harmony in a poem’s aesthetics. In an essay called “The Formalist Critics,” he says that “the citics critic assumes an ideal reader: Cleanth and William, natural born sons, and Murray Brooks, actually born Hewitt Witherspoon, whom Bessie Lee Witherspoon kidnapped from her brother Forrest Bedford Witherspoon as a young baby after the natural mother had died.
He is best known for his contributions to New Criticism in the midth century and for revolutionizing the teaching of poetry in American higher education. Studies in the Structure of Poetry and Modern Poetry and the Traditionargue for the centrality of ambiguity and paradox as a way of understanding critic.
Brooks rebuffed the accusations that New Criticism has an “antihistorical thrust” Leitch and a “neglect of context” Leitch Brooks took this notion of paraphrase and developed it further in his classic The Well Wrought Urn. During this time, he received the Guggenheim Fellowship and held it again in Elsewhere, Ransom has even gone so far as to describe Brooks as a “spell binder” qtd.
Archived from the original on These articles exemplify the tenets of New Criticism:. Attending McTyeire School, a private academy, he received a classical education and went on to study at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennesseewhere he received his B.
Cleanth Brooks – Wikipedia
Studying with Ransom and Warren, Brooks became involved in two significant literary movements: Ronald Crane was particularly hostile to the views of Brooks and the other New Critics. From this frustration, Brooks and Warren published Yhe Poetry.
Arthur Mizener commended Brooks and Warren for offering a new way of teaching poetry:. Retrieved from ” https: Brooks writes, on the one hand, “the resistance which any good poem sets up against all attempts to paraphrase it” qtd. From toBrooks brrooks many academic positions and received a number of distinguished fellowships and honorary doctorates.
In the first case, a correct or “standard” reading would become impossible; in the second case, an ideal reader has still been assumed under the guise of multiple ideal readers Rivkin Untilthey co-edited the journal, publishing works by many influential authors, including Eudora WeltyKenneth Burkeand Ford Madox Ford. Further, Stevenson admits Brooks was “the person who brought excitement and passion to the study of literature” and “whose work It made sense because it opened up for us a way of talking about an actual poem in an actual classroom, and because the technique of focusing upon a poem as language rather than as history or biography or morality, gave a whole new meaning to and justification for the teaching of poetry qtd.
His reputation suffered in the s and s when criticism of New Criticism increased.
Brooks was the central figure of New Criticism, a movement that emphasized structural and textual analysis—close reading—over historical or biographical analysis. Murray, KentuckyU.