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Elementary Guide to Literary Criticism

The aim of the present work, as is indicated by its name, is to help the young student in literary criticism. It is a sort of laboratory manual, in which he will find specific direction for a comprehensive analysis of the principal kinds of literature. It is intended to show him the various points in relation to form, content, and spirit, to which in succession he is to devote his attention. It is hoped that the book will give definiteness and delight to literary study, which, for lack of such a guide, has so often been vague, unsatisfactory, and discouraging. A glance at the table of contents will clearly reveal the plan. The work is divided into three parts, the first of which treats of fundamental principles. In three chapters the nature of criticism, the relation of the author to his work, and the aesthetic principles underlying literary art are briefly discussed. The facts and principles here presented are designed to give a clearer and deeper insight into the nature and processes of criticism. Part Second is chiefly concerned with the external elements of literature. In three chapters it briefly discusses the diction, the various kinds of sentences, the use of figures of speech, and the different species of style as determined partly by the nature of the discourse and partly by the mental endowments of the writer. It is intended to embrace the rhetorical elements of form.
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