Autumn 1949 • Vol. XI No. 4 Communications |

Communications

Sirs, The problems of the post here have kept me from getting my Spring Kenyon Review till July, when I write this; I do not want to hide from the criticisms of me in it, but could not complain if you felt this answer came too late for publishing. As for Mr. Gerald A. Smith, I don't at all deny that Professor Richards has often written sentences which avoid or indeed solve the confusions I was accusing him of; my point was merely that his published work often leaves room for a confusion about these problems, one that actually occurs in the minds of his readers and other people, and had better be cleared up if possible. Indeed I think of his writings as a help in doing so. As to Mr. Smith's doubts about me, I can assure him that I habitually believe things without scientific proof or any completion of a verbal analysis, and that I think other people had much better do the same. We have to pick up a sense of the world as best we can; but there are danger-points in this process

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William Empson (1906-1984) is best known for his first work, Seven Types of Ambiguity: A Study of Its Effects on English Verse (1930). He was an English poet and supported the school of literary criticism known as New Criticism through his many works and his critical process. Empson encouraged a close and detailed reading of works and was well known for his ability to explain meaning in poetic language.

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Tom Jones

By William Empson

Sirs, The problems of the post here have kept me from getting my Spring Kenyon Review till July, when I write this; I do not want to hide from the […]

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