The Secular Scripture
A Study of the Structure of Romance
By (author) Northrop Frye
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Secular Scripture by Northrop Frye
Book DescriptionNorthrop Frye's thinking has had a pervasive impact on contemporary interpretations of our literary and cultural heritage. In his "Anatomy of Criticism," a landmark in the history of modern critical theory, he demonstrated his genius for mapping out the realm of imaginative creation. In "The Secular Scripture" he turns again to the task of establishing a broad theoretical framework, bringing to bear his extraordinary command of the whole range of literature from antiquity to the present.Romance, a mode of literature trafficking in such plot elements as mistaken identity, shipwrecks, magic potions, the rescue of maidens in distress, has tended to be regarded as hardly deserving of serious consideration; critics praise other aspects of the "Odyssey," "The Faerie Queene," Shakespeare's last plays, and Scott's "Waverley" novels, for example, while forgiving the authors' indulgence in childishly romantic plots. Frye, however, discerns in the innumerable romantic narratives of the Western tradition an imaginative universe stretching from an idyllic world to a demonic one, and a pattern of action taking the form of a cyclical descent into and ascent out of the demonic realm. Romance as a whole is thus seen as forming an integrated vision of the world, a "secularscripture" whose hero is man, parallelingthe sacred scripture whose hero is God.The clarity of Northrop Frye's perception, the scope and suggestiveness of hisconceptualizing, the wit and grace of hisstyle, have won him universal admiration.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780674796768
(206mm x 138mm x 17mm)
Imprint: Harvard University Press
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publish Date: 1-Jul-1990
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Northrop Frye
Driv'n by Fortune, Paperback (December 2014)
The story of the 78th Fraser's Highlanders moves from the 1745 Jacobite Rebellion, through the Seven Years' War and the American Revolution, to the War of 1812. When these men were rewarded free land in the "New World," they brought with them revolutionary ideas, creating a legacy that extends far beyond Scotland and Canada.
Anatomy of Criticism, Paperback (September 2000)» View all books by Northrop Frye
Assumes that criticism is a structure of thought and knowledge in its own right. In four essays on historical, ethical, archetypical, and rhetorical criticism, employing examples of world literature from ancient times, this work reconceives literary criticism as a total history rather than a linear progression through time.
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