Autumn 1957 • Vol. XIX No. 4 Book Reviews |

Palpable Designs

Stanley Edgar Hyman PALPABLE DESIGNS LITERARY CRITICISM: A SHORT HISTORY. By William K. Wim- satt, Ir., and Cleanth Brooks. Knopf. $8.95. LITERARY CRITICISM: A Short History is the first attempt since I900, since Saintsbury's A History of Criticism and Literary Taste in Europe, to deal with the subject in detail, from Plato and Aristotle to current prac- titioners. As such, it is not only an opportunity to reshape literary history from the viewpoint of our own age, as Saintsbury did from his age's, but it can draw on a rich body of specialized and partial studies that have appeared in our century. In their introduction, Wimsatt and Brooks made it clear that they are not interested in memorializing pointless ancient quarrels, that their emphasis is on "continuity and intelligibility" (meaning, I take it, contemporary relevance and meaningfulness). They add that they are neither neutral nor indifferent, that they would accept as a descriptive title "An Argumentative History of Literar

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Myths and Mothers

By Stanley Edgar Hyman

Stanley Edgar Hyman PALPABLE DESIGNS LITERARY CRITICISM: A SHORT HISTORY. By William K. Wim- satt, Ir., and Cleanth Brooks. Knopf. $8.95. LITERARY CRITICISM: A Short History is the first attempt […]

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