This anthology brings together core classical texts for understanding literature. The selections from Plato illustrate the poetic philosopher's surprising exclusion of poets from his ideal republic. In his response, Poetics , Aristotle draws on the works of the great Greek playwrights to defend the value of the art. Horace's The Art of Poetry is a vivid practitioner's guide that promotes a style of poetic craftsmanship rooted in wisdom, ethical insight, and decorum. Longinus's On the Sublime explores the nature of inspiration in poetry and prose. This volume is a work of great value and interest to classicists, students, and writers. In her Introduction, Penelope Murray compares and contrasts the viewpoints of these formidable critics as well as their impact on the Western tradition. This edition also includes a new bibliography and chronology and comprehensive notes to each of the texts. For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
From the Back Cover
This new edition of Classical Literary Criticism contains the landmarks of ancient literary criticism in accessible and lucid translations. In her Introduction Penelope Murray shows how many of the most fruitful approaches to understanding literature in the Western tradition derive from these canonical texts. Plato is often regarded as the most poetic of the great philosophers, but he mistrusted the god-like power of poets to work on our feelings and famously banished them from his ideal Republic. Aristotle responded by defending the value of art in his Poetics. His analysis of tragedy, with its key concepts of mimesis, catharsis and hamartia, has influenced generations of critics from the Renaissance onwards. Horace's The Art of Poetry is a vivid practitioner's guide that promotes a style of poetic craftsmanship rooted in wisdom, ethical insight and decorum, while Longinus' remarkable On the Sublime explores the nature of inspiration in poetry and prose. This edition also features a new bibliography and chronology as well as comprehensive notes to each of the texts.