Harold Bloom, The Western Canon: The Books And School Of The Ages Quotes
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Dante subsumed everything, and so, in a sense, secularized nothing.
The democratic age mourns the value of human beings.
The aesthetic is an individual rather than a societal concern.
When critics surrender to the prevailing orthodoxy, the author says they adopt the rhetoric of an occupied country, "one that expects no liberation from liberation.
Great literature will insist upon its self-sufficiency in the face of the worthiest causes
Persuasion is a strong but subdued outrider.
King die hard, in Shakespeare and in life.
At our present bad moment, we need above all to recover our sense of literary individuality and of poetic autonomy.
We are destroying all esthetic standards in the name of social justice.
Greatness recognizes greatness, and is shadowed by it.
Shakespeare and his few peers invented all of us.
Aesthetic criticism returns us to the autonomy of imaginative literature and the sovereignty of the solitary soul, the reader not as a person in society but as the deep self, our ultimate inwardness.
Vision is defined as a program for restoring the human.
It has always been dangerous to institutionalize hope, and we no longer live in a society in which we will be allowed to institutionalize memory.
The old-fashioned sins of reading is the only sense that matters.
Romance depends upon imperfect knowledge.
Almost anything at all can be transmuted into a labyrinth.
Capital is necessary to the cultivation of esthetic value.
Nietzsche tended to equate the memorable with the painful.
Memory is always in art, even when it works involuntarily.
A poem, novel, or play acquires all of humanity's disorders, including the fear of mortality
Great writing is always rewriting or revisionism, and is founded on a reading that clears space for the self.
All writers are to some extent inventors, describing people as they would like to see them in life.
Tradition is not only bending down, or process of benign transmission. It is also a conflict between past genius and present aspiration in which the price is literary survival or canonical inclusion.
Canonical writing is born of an originality fused with tradition. – From the book jacket
Originality must compound with inheritance.
Characters carrying the playwright's disapproval is a un-Shakespearian burden.
The aesthetic and the agonistic are one, according to the ancient Greeks.
The inventor knows HOW to borrow.
Samuel Johnson said Alexander Pope's translation of the Iliad, "tuned the English tongue.
Lawrence will go on burying his own undertakers.
One reads for oneself and for strangers.
All canonical writing possesses the quality "of making you feel strangeness at home.
Shakespeare's exquisite imagining belies our total inability to live in the present moment.
Walter Pater defined Romanticism as adding strangeness to beauty.
Reviewing bad books is bad for the character – WH Auden