New PDF release: The Classic: Sainte-Beuve and the Nineteenth-Century Culture

By Christopher Prendergast

ISBN-10: 0199215855

ISBN-13: 9780199215850

concentrating on a second and a resource in nineteenth-century France, Christopher Prendergast takes up a major query that continues to be with us: What is a classic? The query is, through advantage of its insistent recurrence, itself a vintage query. It returns to hang-out us. It supplied the identify of a textual content for French critic Charles-Augustin Sainte-Beuve in 1850 ("Qu'est-ce qu'un classique?"), because it did within the 20th century for T.S. Eliot and John Coetzee. Centring on Sainte-Beuve in his nineteenth-century context, Prendergast's inquiry takes us traditionally to many areas (antiquity, the center a long time, the 17th and eighteenth in addition to the 19th and early 20th centuries). He additionally offers an highbrow heritage that travels throughout a number of disciplinary territories (in addition to literary feedback and literary heritage, classical reviews, comparative philology, historiography and political thought).

Against this heritage, The vintage maps the evolution of Sainte-Beuve's inspiration from an before everything cosmopolitan perception of the vintage (close in spirit to Goethe's concept of Weltliteratur) to an more and more nationalist notion, with a powerful emphasis at the history of Latinity and France as its important legatee. This emphasis used to be taken up through the extraordinary correct in France after Sainte-Beuve's loss of life, in a made up our minds mobilizing of a model of the "classic" on behalf of a proto-fascist schedule. the ultimate bankruptcy offers with this appropriation and ends with a question of our personal approximately Sainte-Beuve's unique query: within the mild of this bleak historical past, maybe the time has come to dispense with the time period "classic" altogether.

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The Classic: Sainte-Beuve and the Nineteenth-Century Culture Wars by Christopher Prendergast

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