By F. R. Leavis
Dr Leavis's choice from Scrutiny provides in volumes vital fabric which isn't simply to be had in other places. even though many famous books have already been derived from Scrutiny, those volumes don't replica fabric in these books, they usually provide loads of differently uncollected fabric via Dr & Mrs Leavis themselves. the choice concentrates on English literature and literary feedback, and in addition displays Scrutiny's good fortune, from the Nineteen Thirties to the Nineteen Fifties, in commenting at the vital writers of the time. quantity I starts with a suite of reviews through Mrs Q. D. Leavis on educational traditions. There follows a piece of experiences of T. S. Eliot, Yeats, Pound, and newer poets. sections on 'Literary tradition' and 'The Literary international' touch upon minor writers and on literary existence and associations (including Dr Leavis's celebrated 'Keynes, Spender and forex Values').
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Extra info for A Selection from Scrutiny: Volume 1 (v. 1)
Aspects of it were registered in the contemporary mots: 'No flowers by request' and 'Stephen's ink was never watery* (or purple, it might have been added). He had the right to come down on Arnold for his rhetoric about the dreaming spires and to object to his mannerisms. Stephen was the type of critic who makes no parade of personality, has no studied attitudes, whose manner consists of an absence of manner but is felt as the presence of a mature personality. He himself described his style modestly as 'short-winded and provokingly argumentative,' and says that whereas X 'can keep up a flow of eloquence' he himself cannot keep on the rhetorical level because he ' must always have some tangible remark to make'.
The same writer who will tell us all this, and doubtless with perfect truth, would probably have adopted Pope or Johnson's theory with equal confidence if he had lived in the last century. Lycidas repelled Johnson by incongruities which, from his point of view, were certainly offensive. Most modern readers, I will venture to suggest, feel the same annoyances, though they have not the courage to avow them freely... Every critic is in effect criticizing himself as well as his author; and I confess that to my mind an obviously sincere record of impressions, however onesided they may be, is infinitely refreshing, as revealing at least the honesty of the writer.
And other studies would profit. But can anyone be so optimistic as to believe that any university reform less violent than a bloody revolution would make such a programme possible ? LESLIE STEPHEN: CAMBRIDGE CRITIC Q. D. LEAVIS (1939) The reputation of Leslie Stephen as literary critic seems to have been at its lowest ebb when Mr Desmond MacCarthy in his lecture on Leslie Stephen (being the Leslie Stephen lecture for 1937) nailed down the coffin. No contrary demonstration was provoked among the audience or the Press.
A Selection from Scrutiny: Volume 1 (v. 1) by F. R. Leavis