Author: David Daiches
Publisher: Orient Longman
ISBN/UPC (if available): 978-81-250-1602-1
An examination of the different ways in which literature has been explained and evaluated from the time of Plato to the present day.
Its aim is to show how three questions - what is the nature and value of imaginative literature? How can we judge the relative merit of individual literary works? And how is literature related to other human activities? - have been posed and answered down the ages.
The book is in three parts. The first - The Philosophical Inquiry - examines the philosophical foundations of criticism, considering among other things, the significance of Plato's objection to poetry. Part Two - Practical Criticism - deals with the skills of the practical critic as distinct from the philosophical inquire into literary value. Lastly, in Part Three - Literary criticism and Related Disciplines - the book explores the relationship between criticism and the various spheres of learning.
Critical approaches to literature immediately established itself as a standard text on its first appearance and has gone through many printings since then. Now, for the first time, David Daiches has thoroughly revised the book to take account of scholarly developments and changes in perspective since it was first written.
The whole performance is highly professional and u to date: it will be regarded by many hard-pressed students as quite enormously convenient. - Economist
The book is so rich, well documented and balanced. - Financial Times