FR Leavis’ Concept of Great Tradition

FR Leavis’  (1948), an uncompromising critical and polemical survey of English fiction, controversially begins thus: “The great English novelists are Jane Austen, George Eliot, Henry James and Joseph Conrad!’ He regards these writers as the best because they not only “change the possibilities of art for practitioners and readers”, but also promote an “awareness of… Read More FR Leavis’ Concept of Great Tradition

Moral formalism: F. R. Leavis

F. R. Leavis became the major single target for the new critical theory of the 1970s. Both Raymond Williams in Politics and Letters (1979) and Terry Eagleton in Literary Theory: An Introduction (1983) bear witness to his enormous, ubiquitous influence in English Studies from the 1930s onwards. Apropos of Leavis’s The Great Tradition (1948), Williams remarks that by the early 1970s, in… Read More Moral formalism: F. R. Leavis