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1. Anatomy of Criticism: Four Essays
2. Northrop Frye on Shakespeare
3. Myth and Metaphor: Selected Essays
4. Fearful Symmetry: A Study of William
5. The Great Code: The Bible and
6. Fables Of Identity: Studies In
7. Northrop Frye: Anatomy of His
8. The Secular Scripture and Other
9. Anatomy of Criticism: Four Essays
10. The World in a Grain of Sand:
11. Northrop Frye on Milton and Blake
12. Northrop Frye in Conversation
13. The Educated Imagination (Midland
14. Words With Power: Being a Second
15. The Secular Scripture: A Study
16. Fools of Time: Studies in Shakespearean
17. Northrop Frye: A Visionary Life
18. Spiritus Mundi: Essays on Literature,
19. Blake: A Collection of Critical
20. A Natural Perspective: The Development

1. Anatomy of Criticism: Four Essays
by Northrop Frye
Paperback: 400 Pages (2000-09-25)
list price: US$28.95 -- used & new: US$19.11
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Asin: 0691069999
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Striking out at the conception of criticism as restricted to mere opinion or ritual gesture, Northrop Frye wrote this magisterial work proceeding on the assumption that criticism is a structure of thought and knowledge in its own right. In four brilliant essays on historical, ethical, archetypical, and rhetorical criticism, employing examples of world literature from ancient times to the present, Frye reconceived literary criticism as a total history rather than a linear progression through time.

Literature, Frye wrote, is "the place where our imaginations find the ideal that they try to pass on to belief and action, where they find the vision which is the source of both the dignity and the joy of life." And the critical study of literature provides a basic way "to produce, out of the society we have to live in, a vision of the society we want to live in."

Harold Bloom contributes a fascinating and highly personal preface that examines Frye's mode of criticism and thought (as opposed to Frye's criticism itself) as being indispensable in the modern literary world. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (18)

5-0 out of 5 stars All graduate students in comparative literature should own this book...
While the ideas are sometimes very in depth and difficult to swallow, you get a very comprehensive view of the science of literature from one of the great scholars of this century.He also does a wonderful job intertwining many other scholars into his analysis of literature.

5-0 out of 5 stars Good for studying literature
If you are studying literature, this book will be very helpful. It presents good explanations and deffinitions.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Marvelous Book
I bought this book in 1999, under the influence of a prominent professor of English literature; I waited until now to read it, and wish I hadn't. So might you, even if eminence in literary studies is not an aspiration of yours, as it wasn't for me. In the "Polemical Introduction" to this book Northrop Frye wishes for a systematic literary criticism, and says that one proof of its existence would be "an elementary textbook expounding its fundamental principles" -- but the four "essays" he goes on to deliver are themselves the closest approximation to this goal I've seen. In other words, *Anatomy of Criticism* might be the biggest treat for someone with some intellectual footing but no especially deep knowledge of literature; Frye's explanations of fundamental literary techniques and the means of classifying them are very satisfying and productive of a greater "practical" appreciation of literary art.

Late in the book, Frye proposes we adopt the term "anatomy" as a less-misleading critical term for the prose genre more commonly known as "Menippean satire" (writing critiquing the world of ideas through characters expressly intended to be mouthpieces for one intellectual standpoint or another); and an element of his own *Anatomy* is thrown into relief, the vast but lightly worn philological and philosophical learning which informs his system. Although Frye does talk about archetypes, it would be exceptionally facile to view him as a "Jungian" critic; he borrows from many sources, in informed and non-dogmatic ways -- certainly his discreet use of some themes from Nietzsche is the most genteel appropriation of that overly-attractive thinker I've seen. His ability to anticipate the directions criticism would be heading in during the following decades is also impressive (the aforementioned professor once told us that Frye had considered titling the book "Structuralist Poetics", and although I'm unsure of the factual status of that claim there's little in the book that would be unsuitable to it).

The element of Frye's worldview which is indubitably central for his project is his having been an ordained minister of the United Church of Canada. Ordinarily "Christian" academics are intent on making a holy mess of the construal of some unpleasant corner of reality, but Frye makes a convincing case that interpreting medieval and modern literature without an understanding of Biblical typology would be like "Hamlet without the Prince" (perhaps in a very concrete way). Another recurring element of that worldview, less central to the theoretical core of the book but very admirable from the vantage point of the present, is a political liberalism which refuses to join sides against the people; although Frye was understandably critical of the idea that official Soviet culture represented a pitch of perfection regarding the enlightenment of the masses, his comments regarding the "proletarian" character of certain directions in art and his espousal of a classless society as a fundamental goal of culture leave little to be desired from a left-of-center standpoint.

Learn from my mistake: don't wait nine years to read this.

3-0 out of 5 stars Erudite musings
The book is moderately curious but very overrated. Btw, the author himself doesn't pretend it is more than it is: he freely admits in the preface that his book is incomplete and, for example, cannot be taken as an exposition of his theory. It is, he says, an essay in the original meaning of this word: and incomplete attempt. Bloom -- tactfully but even more crisply -- conveys this same idea in his foreword; this, he says, is a period piece, not a timeless book, and, I quote, it "will survive because it is serious, spiritual, and comprehensive, but not because it is systematic or a manifestation of genius." Finally, whatever doubts we may still have are dispelled within the first, say, ten pages. So, what to expect here?

The book is erudite, yes. Intellectually stimulating? Very much so. It'll make you want to read more (not of him, but those he talks about, like Aristotle's Poetics, for example).

But is it directly instructive? No, not really. Well thought out? No. Shapeless? Yes. Unjustified and uneven? Overwhelmingly, yes -- and, at times, descending into outright drivel. An example (p.5):

"It is generally accepted that a critic is a better judge of the value of a poem than its creator, but there is still a lingering notion that it is somehow ridiculous to regard the critic as the final judge of its meaning, even though in practice it is clear that he must be. The reason for this is an inability to distinguish literature from the descriptive or assertive writing which derives from the active will and the conscious mind, and which is primarily concerned to "say" something."

Here we have a careless pile of anecdotal evidence, ad numerum, at least two ad populums, and got only knows what else, crowned by a non sequitur. This? From a supposed prominent literary figure, a person of note? I mean, what prevents one from countering the argument above with, say, the following:

"It is generally accepted that a poet is a better judge of the value of a poem than its critic, but there is still a lingering notion that it is somehow ridiculous to regard the poet as the final judge of its meaning, even though in practice it is clear that he must be" and so on? You get my point. The whole book brims over with this kind of argumentation.

So, should you read it? Not first, and maybe not at all. This is a curious, mostly rewarding, but not a must-read piece. If you're new to Frye, first think whether and why you need him at all, and second, if you decide to dabble, go for Fearful Symmetry first.

I have to say that so far I've more enjoyed and learned from ten pages of Bloom than a hundred pages of Frye, but tastes differ, so YMMV. And besides, even though Anatomy of Criticism is definitely not the "most important work of literary theory in the 20th century", I don't regret reading this book -- after all, I could quit, but I didn't.

5-0 out of 5 stars Essential
It really is of no importance, whether you agree with Frye, or you do not. After all, such things only matter if you are yourself literature historian, and you already developed your own viewpoints of the literature or culture and what does it look like. But, if you are only begining your own path upon that winding road, you shouldn't walk right past Frye without stopping and looking at least for some time.

Amongst the books to which I return often, which fuel over and over again mine desire for things that are slowly, but irreversibly being forgotten, amongst E.R.Curtius, Erich Auerbach, Roland Barthes, stands Frye. Stands there as an equal. His "Anatomy of criticism" keeps shoving itself, many times over, as an endless well of themes, motives, ideas, it functions as a marvelous whole which is trying to shed some light upon the dark corners of the earth. Especially those presented in literatures of all kind.

Of course, this is a major task for any book, and question remains of Fryes successfulness. Personally, putting aside all thoughts of structuralism, deconstructionism and all kinds of isms, that emerged years after this book was published, Fryes conception of critic, and critical task still remain important and strong as ever it was.

I will not talk about it here, it makes no sense at all, retelling Frye. He's making best argue over his own position with his own words, which you will find printed here. What I should say is - putting aside Frye and his work means missing very large part of literature. Not the corpus itself, of course, but rather a certain viewpoint, manner of building worlds with bricks that are dealt beforehand, manner that breathes new life into a body that has been slowly rotting away. ... Read more

2. Northrop Frye on Shakespeare
by Northrop Frye
Paperback: 186 Pages (1988-09-10)
list price: US$21.00 -- used & new: US$4.99
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Asin: 0300042086
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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One of the greatest literary critics of our time here provides a remarkable introduction to the genius of William Shakespeare through a study of ten of Shakespeare's most popular plays: A Midsummer Night's Dream, Romeo and Juliet, Richard II, Henry IV, Measure for Measure, Hamlet, King Lear, Antony and Cleopatra, The Winter's Tale, and The Tempest. The outgrowth of a lifetime of study and teaching, Frye's insights will inform and delight both the expert and the first-time reader of Shakespeare. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

3-0 out of 5 stars Disappointed
I looked all through the chapters on the comedies, particularly _A Midsummer Night's Dream_, and could find no reference to his famous "Green World."There were casual allusions to a "wood-world," but I knew that wasn't it.I felt misled.SO, if you're looking for the source of his Green World idea, this is not the book.

5-0 out of 5 stars An excellent guide to Shakespeare
This is the book that opened Shakespeare up to me.In a college Shakespeare class, which I came into with a strong anti-Shakespeare bias, I found myself confused with the language, bored and indifferent with the stories and frustrated.So, I went out and picked up this book (I had read Frye's the Archetypes of Literature) and it immediately changed my outlook on the old bard.I soon noticed that much of what my professor was lecturing in class was taken from Frye's work.I had discovered the secret.This is a very readable, interesting and witty look into many of the Shakespearean plays.Frye is quite unusual for a literary critic, he's fun to read.

5-0 out of 5 stars Not Your Typical Frye
Frye's essays on Shakespeare are distinguished by their accessibility. In "The Anatomy of Criticism" and "Fearful Symmetry" as well as other, more scholarly work, Frye demonstrates his profound insights into literature generally in the former and Blake's work in the latter. In both works, the reader is expected to have significant background in literary studies.
"Northrop Frye on Shakespeare" is targeted for the general reader. Frye's commentary helps any reader understand the Bard, but it does so in a more accessible style than any other work I have read by Frye. Ideally suited for the high school student or the college undergraduate, Frye's essays provide excellent entry points into many of Shakespeare's plays for the student who wishes to delve further into these essential works. Not exhaustive like Bloom's "Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human," or scholarly and advanced like Cavell's "Disowning Knowledge," Frye's work invites the reader to ponder some key points and formulate her own ideas.
This collection of essays complements the other works mentioned in this review. As an introductory set of essays on Shakespeare, it is without peer.

5-0 out of 5 stars Two Words: "Green World"
This book is excellent.Only two words are needed to explain its incredible value:"Green World"!Nothing more needs to be said.

5-0 out of 5 stars An enlightening look at Shakespeare's plays.
Frye expertly reviews and comments on over half-a-dozen of the Bard's best works.The only problem with the book is that he doesn't look at more ofShakespeare's works! ... Read more

3. Myth and Metaphor: Selected Essays 1974-1988 Northrop Frye
by Northrop Frye
Paperback: 386 Pages (1991-10-01)
list price: US$24.50 -- used & new: US$19.95
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Asin: 0813913691
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4. Fearful Symmetry: A Study of William Blake (Collected Works of Northrop Frye)
by Northrop Frye
Hardcover: 625 Pages (2004-10-01)
list price: US$109.00 -- used & new: US$73.37
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Asin: 0802089836
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Published in 1947, Fearful Symmetry was Northrop Frye's first book and the product of over a decade of intense labour. Drawing readers into the imaginative world of William Blake, Frye succeeded in making Blake's voice and vision intelligible to the wider public. Distinguished by its range of reference, elegance of expression, comprehensiveness of coverage, coherence of argument, and sympathy to its subject, Fearful Symmetry was immediately recognized as a landmark of Blake criticism. Fifty years later, it is still recognized as having ensured the acceptance of Blake as a canonical poet by permanently dispelling the widespread notion that he was the mad creator of an incomprehensible private symbolism.

For this new edition, the text has been revised and corrected in accordance with the principles of the Collected Works of Northrop Frye series. Frye's original annotation has been supplemented with references to currently standard editions of Blake and others, and many new notes have been provided, identifying quotations, allusions, and cultural references. An introduction by Ian Singer provides biographical and critical context for the book, an overview of its contents, and an account of its reception.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

4-0 out of 5 stars frye and beyond
Some time ago I reread Northrop Frye's Fearful Symmetry before having another read through of the poems of William Blake including the longer poems The Four Zoas, Milton and Jerusalem. Despite my appreciation of Frye's book I was struck by the disconnect between many of Frye's well-expressed and coherent ideas and the poems themselves. I noticed also that Frye barely quoted from any of the poems or analyzed any passage specifically. At that point I started to look around for other texts which offered a different viewpoint from Frye to see if my dissatisfaction was justified or not. The more I read the alternative views the more convinced I became that Frye's account was seriously deficient. I do not think he is entirely wrong or that there is nothing of value in his book. However, I strongly recommend that readers interested in Blake's poetry read alternative views. The ones I have found most useful and interesting include the current book listed here as well as the following:The Four Zoas (Photographic Facsimile (Magno & Erdman), Narrative Unbound (Donald Ault),The Dialectic of Vision (Fred Dortort),Dark Figures in the Desired Country (Gerda Norvig),The Traveler in the Evening (Morton Paley), Rethinking Blake's Textuality (Molly Rothenberg),Blake's Critique of Transcendence (Peter Otto) and some of the articles in Blake's Sublime Allegory (Curran & Wittreich Eds.) I might note that after doing all this reading of the poems and about Blake I am convinced that the unpublished The Four Zoas is the central and most significant poem Blake wrote and that both Milton and Jerusalem suffer in comparison with it. The problem that Blake may have realized with the Four Zoas was that it could never be published in its authentic form due to the graphic (for the time) psychosexual content of the illustrations (the subtitle of the poem is The Torments of Love and Jealousy).

5-0 out of 5 stars searchlight
I have a much clearer sense of Blake's writings now that I've read this book.I took a long time in finishing it, reading some major poems by W.B. at the same time.This is really an exciting book; it brings to life a whole universe - that lived in the poet's imagination.Blake is alive today (in the spirit of his artistic creations) I am convinced.William Blake had a great gift for describing aspects of real life in a way that was inspired by the Bible, and some other imaginative or visionary artists and poets; he was also highly opinionated.It's impressive how wellFrye understood Blake's gift, and his personal life, which also makes a strand of this effort, which is a literary effort in it's own right.Anyone with an interest in Blake ought to read this book.It's a tool that allows one to approach Blake's creations of writing and visual artistry with an active (as well as open) mind.

5-0 out of 5 stars Essential for Blake fans
Northrop Frye manages to convey in sweeping master strokes the brilliance of William Blakes poetry and unlocks the mysteries of Blakes symbols.More importantly, Frye engages the reader in learning a new way to look at literature in general and open up his eyes to a deeper world.

5-0 out of 5 stars The tygers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction
This punch statement belongs to William Blake .
Enthusiasm , passion and a huge sense of commitment describe the enormous effort behind these admirable lines written by Frye
Every major poet demands from his critic a combination of direction and perspective , of intensive and extensive reading . Cosmology is literary art but there are two kinds : the first designed to understand the world and the other designed to transform it into the human desire .
The part one The argument
1. The case against Locke
2. The rising God
3. Beyond Good and evil
4. A literalist of the imagination
5. The word within the word
Part two The development of the symbolism
6. Tradition and experiment
7. The thief of fire
8. The refiner in fire
9. The nightmare with her ninefold
Part threeThe final synthesis
10. Comus Agonistes
11. The city of God
12. The burden of the valley of Vision
Fearfulsymmetry was written during the Second World Two and the principal reason which persuades me to recommend you this wise essay is the fact you can draw a line in the story which starts with Homero , Dante , Michelangelo,Blake and Beethoven and obtain a powerful conclusion about the enormous significance of this admirable thinker.
Beware the fact the unforgettable conductor Wilhelm Fürtwangler whose father was an intimate friend of Hans Schliemann liked to visit Rome and Florence to watch over and over the Michelangelo sculptures and paintings ; this fact allows meto onclude the underground road between the Florentine genius and theBonn genius .
An indispensable book in your library.

5-0 out of 5 stars Judging the book by its cover . . .
One disadvantage of browsing online bookstores is that you can't simply skim the cover blurbs; sometimes you just have to settle for the opinions of strangers like me. So it may be helpful to read the quotes on the back cover of my copy of 'Fearful Symmetry.'

"To say it is a magnificent, extraordinary book is to praise it as it should be praised, but in doing so one gives little idea of the huge scope of the book and of its fiery understanding . Several great poets have written of Blake, but this book, I believe, is the first to show the full magnitude of Blake's mind, its vast creative thought." -- Edith Sitwell, 'The Spectator'

"According as we agree or disagree with Mr. Frye's contention we shall decide finally on the supremacy of his book. In following the structure of Blake's total vision and relating it to the thought of his age he has triumphantly carried out a task which, given the giant shape of the material, cannot help being immense. His cadences, by sheer explanatory devotion, approach the sonorities of Blake's own." -- 'Times Literary Supplement'

"Frye conducts his ambitious study with unflagging energy, great enthusiasm, and immense erudition." -- 'Poetry'

"An intelligent and beautifully written critical interpretation of the poetry and symbolic thought of William Blake..." -- 'New Yorker'

My opinion: Northrop Frye's literary criticism manages to shift the ground underfoot in the same rare way Blake's poetry does. Frye was the first to crack Blake's code, remove from him the labels of Mystic and Nutcase, and reveal him as a poet who systematically recreates the world. Frye taught Blake to Jesuits, Communist organizers, deans of women, and angry young poets. He was continually pleased to encounter doctors, housewives, clergymen, teachers, blue-collar workers, and shopkeepers, all with a great and deep appreciation of Blake.

Frye's deep appreciation and admiration for Blake comes through on every page, six times over. I reread this book about every five years, each time coming away seeing the world upside down, inside out, and worth renovating. ... Read more

5. The Great Code: The Bible and Literature
by Northrop Frye
Paperback: 288 Pages (2002-11-11)
list price: US$14.00 -- used & new: US$7.65
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Asin: 0156027801
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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An examination of the influence of the Bible on Western art and literature and on the Western creative imagination in general. Frye persuasively presents the Bible as a unique text distinct from all other epics and sacred writings. “No one has set forth so clearly, so subtly, or with such cogent energy as Frye the literary aspect of our biblical heritage” (New York Times Book Review). Indices. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, creative Biblical commentary
This wonderful book really enhanced my ability to appreciate the Bible on deeper levels. Frye writes about how the Bible is a poetic, metaphoric, mythic, and universal work with truths that can be applied to many different situations, as opposed to concrete, historical writing that is true for a limited number of specific situations.His position is that whether or not the Bible corresponds to historical truths, it has metaphoric truth that can be valuable either way. He also describes the Bible as having a "typological structure," in which the Old Testament and New Testament parallel each other. The Old Testament foreshadows and predicts the New Testament, and the New Testament fulfills the Old Testament. The Old Testament also parallels and echoes itself. Frye writes that the Bible can be seen as the key to mythology, because just about everything that can be found in other sources of mythology can be found in the Bible. He lists seven phases in the Bible: creation, revolution, law, wisdom, prophecy, gospel, and apocolypse, each phase expanding on the perspectives of the previous phases. Frye lists varous images and metaphors used in the Bible, and describes how each idealized or apocolyptic metaphor has a demonic counter-part. He describes the body of Christ as the central metaphor in the Bible.He describes the mythic narrative structure of the Bible as U shaped, beginning with man in paradise in teh Garden of Eden, man losing that paradise, and eventually regaining it in Revelation, with a series of rises and declines in between. Within the Bible, Moses and Jesus each follow the same mythic structure, paralleling each other in their leading man to redemption. Resonance is a major feature of the Bible, with many phrases and images developing universal significance far beyond the original context. The Bible provides a vision of an innocent, ideal world, and this vision guides our way of living. With many references to myths, poems, and literature, this book can be fascinating regardless of one's religious views.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Architecture of Western Literature
This is an illuminating book which reveals the architecture of Western literature and its seminal relationship with the Bible. The study develops ideas already suggested in Anatomy of Criticism or The Secular Scripture, but in this occasion The Great Code provides plenty of examples that account for that relationship. Frye conceives of the Bible as a literary text: a text that codifies the archetypes, metaphors, images and myths that later on have been rewritten in every literary work belonging to Western Culture.

David Amezcua, Spain.

4-0 out of 5 stars An Interesting Swerve
Professor Harold Bloom (Western Canon, Book of J, numerous anthologies) developed an interesting theory of poetry (Anxiety of Influence, A Map of Misreading) that claims creative writers must misprison their precursors in a way that clears imaginative space for their own effort.Bloom details these various misreadings, drawing strongly upon Freudian theory, then applies them to several poets and poems.

It is useful to use this line of thinking when reading the "Great Code" by Northrup Frye.As one often observes of secular writers observing sacred writings, they seem to swerve from theology in misreadings that open up creative vistas which they can decorate.I suspect that these misprisons will attract or repel a reader depending upon that reader's stance toward the secular and the sacred.

While I feel comfortable with both worlds, this book is somewhat off-putting for me in that I cannot accept many of Frye's swerves in his reading of scripture.For example, he notes a U-shaped curve that underlies the narrative action in the Bible (failure, punishment, redemption) and identifies this as a form of comedy.Also, he thinks that Shakespeare closely read the Bible account of King Saul and David and that this examination was a basis for Macbeth.And so on.

Thus, for me, Frye reads the same words that I have, yet comprehends different meanings that all serve to support the classic definition of humanism - man is the measure of all things, including God.Stated another way, Frye does not seem to be able to accept God on His terms and think about it in a literary way as if one has to choose between being either and only a critic or a believer.

Creative writers like John Milton in Paradise Lost or more recently, Cormac McCarthy in The Road have been able to take God seriously and on His terms and think creatively, humanistically, and literarily.Veering slightly, Aquinas could see God and Aristotle and do justice to both without offending either, I think.

It seems to be an important test of imagination:How do you think about God and man?Strong writers can move creatively with both and show no uneasiness.Weak writers lean too heavily on one and too heavily against the other.

And, yet, the final chapter in the Great Code, Language II, is a magnificent summarizing and synthesis of the preceding swerves.I would recommend you begin at the end with Language II then return to the start.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Gap Between the Scholars and the Pew

"The result, then, of what is now called the historical-critical method was an understanding of the Bible as a collection of historically conditioned documents, reflecting the biases, backgrounds and idiosyncrasies of its authors."Michael Coogan

Coogan's Archaeological Inquiry:
Professor Coogan explains, "The first challenges to this traditional understanding of the Bible as unequivocally the word of God, consistent and free from error, came in the 17th century, when philosophers challenged traditional views about the Bible's authorship and authority, by appealing to common sense, logic and historical method. By the 19th century this approach had gained considerable momentum. During the same period thousands of ancient texts-in languages such as Assyrian, Babylonian, Aramaic and later Sumerian and Ugaritic-were excavated, deciphered and translated. Many of these texts had close or even verbatim correspondences with biblical passages, so that the view of the Bible as a unique document without parallel came under irrevocable challenge. Finally, there was an exponential growth of scientific knowledge: The Bible was simply not true or not simply true, in the sense in which it had for so long been considered. Its cosmology, anthropology and chronology were often just wrong. For the most part, scholars engaged in this new criticism were not only believers but ordained clergy, generally teachers in seminaries." Between the Scholars and the Pew

A feel for the context
Bible students are warned to be aware of the figurative devices in the Bible and the need to carefully read and study the Bible to become familiar with the ways that language is utilized. The evidence is clear that parts of the Bible are meant figuratively, and we are rejecting the Word of God if we refuse to consider the possibility of figures of speech. Origen went so far as to suggest that there were some passages of Scripture that had no literal meaning. We should not refuse to understand a method the Bible itself uses, but need to get a feel for the context, to see the types of literature contained in the Bible, the way it uses poetic language, the way it gives commands, relates history and predicts the future.

Frye on the Bible:
An ordained United Church minister as well as a critic and teacher, N. Frye wrote two major books on the Bible, The Great Code in 1982 and Words with Power in 1990. All his life he turned to the Bible for inspiration, refreshment and an understanding of the ideas behind Western civilization. As he said, his critical work, beginning with his famous study of William Blake in 1947, all revolved around the Bible.
At one point Robert Fulford, a Toronto author and journalist finds him reflecting that the Bible leaves us with "a very human feeling that if we were God, we would work harder to earn our keep; that if we were in charge of what happened, we wouldn't make such appalling bungles as God appears to be making." In 'Northrop Frye Unbuttoned,' we read a closely related notion in the book; "The worst thing we can say of God is that he knows all."

The Great Code:
In 1982 Frye published The Great Code, which has since been translated into 22 languages. In it, he treats the Bible as a totally unified book, disregarding the scholarly agreement that it actually was written by dozens of writers in three different languages over a period of a thousand years. Frye declares that the coherence of the Bible's narrative as a whole is created by what he calls a 'U-Shaped plot,' that begins with the Genesis creation of Adam and Eve, family and garden state is followed by a fall into a long alternation of historical disasters and triumphs. He concludes with a final ascent back to harmony in the eternal city of Jerusalem at the end of the book of Revelation. This U-shaped pattern is repeated in dozens of minor plots of fall and rise in the stories of Joseph, Moses, David, or Job, and of Peter and Paul, each of which functions as a 'type' or pre-figuration of what follows and of the encompassing whole. Frye discovers the same kind of unifying repetition or typology in the recurrence of specific images throughout the Old and New Testaments--e.g. the image of the tree, the ocean, the tower, the garden, the sheep and shepherd. Such repetitions of plot and image tie the many books of the Bible together, and also create a sense of deja vu and premonition, hinting that discreet events have some greater symbolic significance, that they are both themselves and not themselves, that time may be an illusion.

Myth, Metaphor in the Bible:
In 'Words With Power,' 1990, Frye re-examines the role of myth and metaphor in the Bible, reasserting that many of its central themes and images reverberate throughout Western literature. His conclusion is that "the organizing structures of the Bible and the corresponding structures of 'secular' literature reflect each other," that a finite number of species of myths, including those of creation, fall, exodus, destruction and redemption, provide the narrative sources of literature. Such ideas, have been suggested by Frye earlier, in his study of the Bible and literature, as 'The Great Code,' a summing up of his overall critical views. Some parts of the book, which deals with different idioms of linguistic expression and the social function of literature feels as if Frye was just rewriting earlier assertions, trying to answer questions and restatement raised by his critics.

A lineage of Mythographers:
Frye remains the eighth most frequently cited author in the arts and humanities, among a company that includes Aristotle, Shakespeare and Freud. Much of his thinking about structure came from his study of Sir James Frazer's anthropology and Oswald Spengler's gloomy critique of the West. Frye traced his ancestry to a lineage of mythographers who all share the thesis that literature evolves from mythology and that both embody a community's core values and beliefs, about the devine and about secular matters from birth to death. In Northrop Frye Unbuttoned, he tells us, in a typically rueful way, that Alfred North Whitehead's Science and the Modern World influenced him just as profoundly.

Frye in his own mind:
Northrop Frye started his career as a divinity student and a preacher in the United Church of Canada, but then took an M.A. in English literature at Oxford and wrote his Master's thesis on the romantic poet and painter William Blake, whose sources of vision Frye demonstrated could be found in a literary tradition that stemmed from the Bible. Frye never seemed to have been a Christian in any conventional sense, he was a far from unquestioning Christianity. He not only didn't believe in Christian dogma, he didn't believe in Pistis Sophia, faithful belief; "I don't trust anything that remains in the dark as an object of belief." He had the consolation of knowing he wasn't alone; he was always turning back on his themes and ideas to restate earlier positions and modify them.

5-0 out of 5 stars classic work
Intellectual "tour de force" by the greatest critic of our time:take the time to read, study, and enjoy.
This great text is an all-time classic that will appeal to the scholar and the layperson alike.
Frye is an amazing syncretist. I have never read any author other than Frye who can slip in and out of various disciplines so easily,and all the while weaving a "seamless web" of an argument that is logically structured and beautifully written. I realize that some statements in the text may offend conservative readers, but overall, the book is neutral regarding any matter of systemic doctrine or denominationally specific exegetical concerns. If anything, Frye's text offers the highest praise for the Bible
by showing how the language and imagery of the KJV penetrates all aspects of western literary and intellectual culture. ... Read more

6. Fables Of Identity: Studies In Poetic Mythology
by Northrop Frye
Paperback: 276 Pages (1963-11-15)
list price: US$20.95 -- used & new: US$10.99
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Asin: 0156297302
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In this outstanding collection of sixteen essays, the world-renowned critic and scholar discusses various works in the central tradition of English mythopoeic poetry, paying particular attention to the centrality of Romanticism.
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7. Northrop Frye: Anatomy of His Criticism
by A. C. Hamilton
 Paperback: 316 Pages (1991-06)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$0.95
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Asin: 0802069053
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8. The Secular Scripture and Other Writings on Critical Theory, 1976?1991 (Collected Works of Northrop Frye)
by Northrop Frye
Hardcover: 625 Pages (2006-07-01)
list price: US$114.00 -- used & new: US$99.00
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Asin: 0802039456
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Northrop Frye?sThe Secular Scripture was first published in 1976 and was soon recognized as one of his most influential works, reflecting an extensive development of Frye?s thoughts about romance as a literary form. This new edition in the Collected Works of Northrop Frye series brings The Secular Scripture together with thirty shorter pieces pertaining to literary theory and criticism from the last fifteen years of Frye?s life.

Frye?s study illuminates the enduring attraction and deep human significance of the romance genre in all its forms. He provides a unique perspective on popular fiction and culture and shows how romance forms have, by their very structural and conventional features, an ability to address both specific social concerns and deep and fundamental human concerns that span time and place. In distinguishing popular from elite culture, Frye insists that they are both ultimately two aspects of the same ?human compulsion to create in the face of chaos.? The additional late writings reflect Frye?s sense at the time that he was working ?toward some kind of final statement,? which eventually saw the light of day, only months before his death, as Words with Power (1990).

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9. Anatomy of Criticism: Four Essays by Northrop Frye
by Northrop Frye
 Paperback: Pages (1969)

Asin: B003VQ5OXI
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10. The World in a Grain of Sand: Twenty-Two Interviews With Northrop Frye
by Northrop Frye
 Hardcover: 351 Pages (1990-12)
list price: US$59.95 -- used & new: US$59.95
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Asin: 0820412155
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11. Northrop Frye on Milton and Blake (Collected Works of Northrop Frye)
Hardcover: 530 Pages (2005-10-01)
list price: US$97.00 -- used & new: US$85.50
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Asin: 0802039197
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The writings of John Milton and William Blake were central to Northrop Frye?s concept of the imaginative structure of Western literature and thought. He considered them the two most important poet-prophets in the English tradition.

This volume brings together all of Frye?s writings on Milton and Blake from 1947 to 1987 ? published and unpublished essays, reviews, commentaries, and public lectures ? with the exception of Fearful Symmetry (published as Volume 14 of the Collected Works of Northrop Frye). During this time, Frye?s engagement with Milton moved outward from the university into conferences, publications, and public lectures. His engagement with Blake, meanwhile, was a personal, intellectual, and spiritual quest, leading him to became the world authority on Blake in the mid-twentieth century.

Angela Esterhammer, a student of Frye?s in the 1980s, has provided annotation and an introduction that demonstrates the poets? importance for Frye?s literary and cultural criticism and provides a twenty-first-century perspective on the legacy of his work. This key volume of the Collected Works will be important to scholars interested in Frye as well as those of Milton and Blake.

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12. Northrop Frye in Conversation (In Conversation series)
by David Cayley
Paperback: 240 Pages (1992-04-06)
list price: US$13.95 -- used & new: US$24.87
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Asin: 0887845258
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Northrop Frye discusses with David Cayley his life as a teacher and scholar, focusing on the university as "the engine room of society." The book concludes with Frye's thoughts on religion and his writings on the Bible. ... Read more

13. The Educated Imagination (Midland Books: No. 88)
by Northrop Frye
 Paperback: 160 Pages (1964-01-01)
list price: US$11.95 -- used & new: US$6.25
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Asin: 0253200881
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Addressed to educators and general readers -- the "consumers of literature" from all walks of life -- this important new book explores the value and uses of literature in our time. Dr. Frye offers, in addition, challenging and stimulating ideas for the teaching of literature at lower school levels, designed both to promote an early interest and to lead the student to the knowledge and kaleidoscopic experience found in the study of literature.

Dr. Frye's proposals for the teaching of literature include an early emphasis on poetry, the "central and original literary form," intensive study of the Bible, as literature, and the Greek and Latin classics, as these embody all the great enduring themes of western man, and study of the great literary forms: tragedy and comedy, romance and irony.

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Customer Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars The need for Imagination
As the title suggests Frye breezily discusses the preeminent role that imagination, and hence literature, does and should play in a person's life.Although sparsely written, each paragraph deceptively contains a great deal of insight and weight.This is more than a book for English majors; it is highly recommended for anyone who considers herself a true and active citizen of a liberal democracy.

5-0 out of 5 stars This book changed my life.
I read this when I was 21. I became a writer. The book gave me inspiration and an appreciation ofliterature. It also helped me to developan ideology/philosophy about life and the imagination. It should be mandatory in schools today.

5-0 out of 5 stars what is important about reading literature
On the recommendation of a friend, I picked up Northrop Frye's _The Educated Imagination_.As my colleague said, "I read this each fall to remind me what is important about teaching literature."I could not agree more.

Originally broadcast as a series of six lectures on literary criticism, Frye not only introduces what "literary criticism" is (the answer surprised me), but also addresses the question of "why is literature important?"An excellent question in an age of technology and science.

Among other things, Frye explains that reading fiction forces us to think about the unthinkable - to expand our imaginations - and therefore push the envelope of technology and science.Frye also points out that in thinking beyond the possible, we develop a tolerance for other ideas, which in turn breeds tolerance of other people and other opinions different from our own.I cannot think of a better reason to read.

Of course there is much more in this brief, little book.These are only the ideas that resonated most with me.It is an easy read, accessable and conversational in tone - but the ideas and arguments presented are deep and certainly worth attention.I disagree with the former reviewer - this is a must read for fans of fiction, as it gives deeper meaning to the tales and stories.But I also recommend for any reader, if only to show why the exercise of reading is so important.

3-0 out of 5 stars From a Student's perspective...
Very insightful. I know he meant to make this an informal style, but it's confusing. He keeps going back and forth, here and there, but he ultimately makes 1-2 good points in each essay. However, the one or two interesting point he makes in each essay really tickles your mind. Very philosophical....but..not recommended for those who thrive on fiction.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very accessible and insightful
Northrop Frye is probably *the* most important English-language literary critic of the 20th century."The Educated Imagination" is a series of six short essays based on talks/lectures he gave on Canadian radio.His focus here is slightly different than many of his other works (like the classic study "An Anatomy of Criticism".He begins by posing some very basic questions that tend to be taken for granted in more scholarly works-- questions like "What IS literature?", "How is literature different from other types of writing?" "What value is there in reading/studying literature?""How should literature be taught in schools?" etc. In the course of answering these questions, Frye introduces the reader to his general theory of literature and literary criticism.Throughout the book, his style, tone, vocabulary, and approach are extremely accessible and "reader-friendly".All and all, this isn't as through, as rigorous, or a intelletually rich a book as some of Fryes more scholarly work (e.g. "An Anatomy of Criticism", "The Great Code", "Fearful Symmetry", etc.), but it's an excellent and accessible introduction to his view of literature in general-- and as to why humans create and value it. ... Read more

14. Words With Power: Being a Second Study of 'The Bible and Literature' (Collected Works of Northrop Frye)
by Northrop Frye
Hardcover: 448 Pages (2008-08-09)
list price: US$98.00 -- used & new: US$66.15
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Asin: 0802092934
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Words with Power is the crowning achievement of the latter half of Northrop Frye's career. Portions of the work can be found in Frye's notebooks as far back as the mid-1960s when he had just finished Anatomy of Criticism, and he completed the book shortly before his death in 1991. Beyond summing up his ideas about the relation of the Bible to Western culture, Words with Power boldly confronts a host of questions ranging from the relationship between literature and ideology to the real meaning of words like 'spirit' and 'faith.'

The first half of the 'double mirror' structure looks at the language in which the Bible is written, arguing that it is identical to that of myth and metaphor. Frye suggests, therefore, that given this characteristic, the Bible should be read imaginatively rather than historically or doctrinally. However, he is also careful to point out the ways in which the Bible is more than a conventional work of fiction. The second half is an astonishing tour de force in which Frye demonstrates how both the Bible and literature revolve around four primary concerns of human life.

This edition goes beyond the original in its documentation of Frye's dazzlingly encyclopedic range of reference. Profound and searching, Words with Power is perhaps the most daring book of Frye's career and one of the most exciting.

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Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Lost Perspective
Quiet and sustained literary revelation is how I would describe my experience on reading this book, Words with Power: all of a sudden there is the magic again, in reading and in "why" I should keep reading. The picture is complete, and professor Frye reminds us that it was there all the time, like Poe's The Purloined Letter.

How refreshing it is to listen (this is what reading Frye feels like) to a top specialist explaining why, after all, literature is all about us, people, and why no jargon or scholarly pirouettes should obscure that fact. Being myself a specialist in another field this is downright inspiring and encouraging. The Bible is at the top of a golden chain that William Blake saw and Frye secures, we are the chain, the living words of a book that lives, not in the paper, but in every spark of genius and down to the shyest creative labor.

We possess the key to the door, the richness of the kingdom: I owe to Frye to remind me where I had left the keys.

4-0 out of 5 stars Experience not subject to debate
Very much appreciated A Customer's knowledge of Frye and his work, but I would like to supplement that review of Words with Power by saying that "Symbol and Spirit" so lifted my heart that fifteen years ago I typed out long sections of the chapter, then made copies for some twenty friends who practiced insight meditation. As I read them, Frye and Campbell are not trying to convert anyone, just reporting on or alluding to a certain kindof experience. Who would attempt to convert someone into a taste or a feeling? I know a woman who can walk into a store and match a color exactly without having a swatch or paint sample in her hand. I can't do that. I know another woman whose hearing is so acute, a quiet house is alive with sounds that I can't hear. This is not always pleasant for her. Frye communicated to me that he had had a glimpse of the ineffable.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good, but not as good as _The Great Code_...
This is Frye's second book on the Bible and literature. The *and* is important-- he's not (as Robert Alter does) writing
about the Bible *as* literature-- rather he's writing about how the Bible, its motifs, images, stories, and archetypes have served, and continue to serve, as an animating force of western Literature-- even literature that is not particularly relgious in subject.

Like all of Frye's books, _Words with Power_ begins with a restatement and refinement of Frye's 'general theory' of language and literature, examining what we mean (and what he means) by words like "literature", "myth", "metaphor", "symbol", etc. This 'introductory' section occupies the first third of the book-- which might frustrate some readers, eager to jump into the main subject matter. However, it serves as an essential contextualization for the observations that Frye makes later on. Also, what Frye has to say here is not just repetition of points he's made before (although many points will be familiar to those who've read his other works), but he expands upon certain points, clarifies others, and introduces some new observations.

Of particular interest here, I think, is is his discussion of what he calls the rhetorical or ideological mode of language, which exists in contradistiction to the demotic/descriptive mode of language and the conceptual/dialectical mode, as well as the imaginative/poetic mode. Frye has not generally spent much time in previous works discussing the social/political functions of language-- and it's interesting to see him devote a good deal of discussion to the subject. He also discusses at some length the idea of *kyrigma*, or *ephipany*, which takes place when language seems to operate at an almost mystical level(previously, he had called this the 'anagogic' level of language). Unfortunately, this is one of the weak spots of the book (I regard the chapter on "Symbol and Spirit" as the book's nadir)-- as I think Frye starts to take on the role of an instructor on how to obtain mystical experience through reading, and forget that he's supposed to be a scholarly analyzing various modes of language. (I'm reminded of Joseph Campbell's later works, where he starts to act more like a prophet of a mythic message-- i.e. "Follow your bliss", and less like a scholar of comparative mythology.)

After this lengthy introduction, Frye gets into the 'meat' of his subject, which is an analysis of how four central motifs
of the bible are also archetypal touchstones throughout western literature. Those four motifs are: the mountain, the garden, the cave, and the furnace. As always, Frye notes that these motifs tend to be situated within a mythically opposed 'higher world' (associated with the divine and representative of human desire) and a 'lower world' (associated with the demonic and representative of human anxiety), and consequently touch on matters of cosmology as well as morality. This kind of archetypal analysis is what Frye does best, and his chapter on the mountain (which is to be associated with mythic themes of human ascent to a higher world and divine descent to the world of human experience)is the book's strongest. He also discusses other images/motifs that serve the same function in the bible and other literature-- including ladders, towers, trees, etc.
As one might imagine, the chapter on the cave discusses motifs of human (or divine descent) to a lower world and then reemergence from it. The chapter on the garden discusses motifs of nature, while that of the furnace, those of human technology. Frye has touched on all of these ideas before, of course, but his thoughts on them are outlined very clear and precisely here, and he shows very well the persistence of these biblical/mythical motifs in western literature.

When all's said and done, this is a worthy read for those who like Frye's approach to literature-- especially those who appreciated _The Great Code_, his first work on the Bible. Nevertheless, I can't honestly say it's his best book-- or even his most insightful. I also don't think I'd recommend it as an introduction to Frye's approach to literary theory-- I'd say one should start with _An Anatomy of Criticism_ or _The Great Code_ instead (or, for much more popularizing approach, _The Educated Imagination_). ... Read more

15. The Secular Scripture: A Study of the Structure of Romance (Harvard paperbacks)
by Northrop Frye
Paperback: 200 Pages (1978-01-01)
list price: US$24.50 -- used & new: US$21.05
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Asin: 0674796764
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Northrop Frye's thinking has had a pervasive impact on contemporary interpretations of our literary and cultural heritage. In his Anatomy of Criticism, a landmark in the history of modern critical theory, he demonstrated his genius for mapping out the realm of imaginative creation. In The Secular Scripture he turns again to the task of establishing a broad theoretical framework, bringing to bear his extraordinary command of the whole range of literature from antiquity to the present.

Romance, a mode of literature trafficking in such plot elements as mistaken identity, shipwrecks, magic potions, the rescue of maidens in distress, has tended to be regarded as hardly deserving of serious consideration; critics praise other aspects of the Odyssey, The Faerie Queene, Shakespeare's last plays, and Scott's Waverley novels, for example, while forgiving the authors' indulgence in childishly romantic plots. Frye, however, discerns in the innumerable romantic narratives of the Western tradition an imaginative universe stretching from an idyllic world to a demonic one, and a pattern of action taking the form of a cyclical descent into and ascent out of the demonic realm. Romance as a whole is thus seen as forming an integrated vision of the world, a "secularscripture" whose hero is man, parallelingthe sacred scripture whose hero is God.

The clarity of Northrop Frye's perception, the scope and suggestiveness of hisconceptualizing, the wit and grace of hisstyle, have won him universal admiration.

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Customer Reviews (2)

4-0 out of 5 stars A Clear Explanation of Archetypal Theory
For the past couple of years, I have had an avid interest in Literary Criticism. I tend to be a traditionalist in this area, and so have a lot of respect for Northrop Frye, who was the last great proponent of an objective view of literature.

Frye's most important work is The Anatomy of Criticism, which is very insightful, but can also be difficult to understand, especially for someone new to Critical Theory.

Secular Scripture is an in-depth application of the theories presented in Anatomy of Criticism to one particular branch of literature: romance. As such, it relies more upon concrete examples than upon abstract reason, and is much easier to understand. If you are looking for a good introduction to archetypal theory in literature, this is probably the book for you.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not Frye's best book
Northrop Frye is probably *the* most important and most influential English-language literary critic of the 20th century-- and certainly the most important one to come from North America. _The Secular Scripture_, however, is not one of his better-known books, and that's probably for the best, as it's one of his weaker efforts. Thebook consists of six chapters, which were originally delivered as lectures during a 'special guest' stint he did at Harvard/Radcliffe a few decades back. The ostensible subject of these lectures (and, by extension, this book) is the literary genre of romance. However, like all of Frye's books, the specific topic is discussed within the context of Frye's theory of literature in general. Thus, _The Secular Scripture_ introduces the reader to Frye's general theories, such as the idea that literature possesses the same structure as myth, that there are essentially four main mythoi or plots of literature (comedy, romance, tragedy, and irony), that recurrent literary motifs/images tend to be structured around the mythic opposition of an ideally imagined world and a nightmarish demonic one, and that the only real difference between "realistic" literature and "fantastic literature) is that the mythic elements in the latter are most obvious and are presented with little narrative concealment, whereas those in the former tend to be displaced, or otherwise altered so as to be fitted into a context of "plausibility". It is within the context of these general ideas about literature that Frye enumerates what he sees as being the particular character of romance. For those unfamiliar with Frye's terminology, "romance" here does not refer to the kind of genre fiction that is typically marketed as romance-- i.e. the classic Harlequin romance or'bodice-ripper' tale. Or rather, it does not refer *only* (or even primarily) to such stories. Frye uses "romance" to describe a general type of story pattern-- one that usually involves a quest-- and which results in the hero or heroine enduring much suffering, difficulty, and adventure before finally attaining his/her goal (which may or may not even have been known to him/her earlier on). It can be a grand 'quest' in the sense of the medieval romances centered around knights (e.g. the quest for the Holy Grail. It may be a kind of spiritual fulfillment, realization, or redemption-- as in Apuleius's _The Golden Ass_ or in many narratives of the lives of saints. Or it be a quest for knowledge/solutions to some problem (most detective stories are romances, Frye notes, as are many spy stories). Most works in the genres of "fantasy" and "science-fiction" fall into this category as well. And yes, it can be a quest for "true love" or "erotic fulfillment" as in the case of the dimestore bodice-rippers that are called romances. And, of course, it can also be applied to a whole host of other works of literature-- novels, poems, plays, etc., including allegorical literature like _A Pilgrim's Progress_ and _The Faerie Queen_. What defines romance, in Frye's schema, is not the object of the quest (or still less contemporary marketing terms like "mystery", "fantasy", "sci-fi", or "romance"), but the overall structure and pattern of the narrative. In spite of its many variations (which have their own particular subconventions), romance as a whole, in all its forms, has an overall story pattern and structure that is unified, recognizable, and quite distict from the three other 'mythoi' of literature: comedy, tragedy, and irony. So, what does Frye actually have to say about romance in _The Secular Scripture_? Well, for the most part, the book is concerned with outlining the structural conventions of romance as a whole-- and specifically in outlining what it's features are and what makes it different from other types of narrative structures (i.e. why is it a romance and not a comedy). This mis most evident in the three 'main' chapters that deal specifically with the substance/structure of the form-- "Heroes and Heroines of Romance", "Themes of Descent" and "Themes of Ascent". Unfortunately, those are also the weakest chapters. The main reason for this, I think, is that Frye has already outlined his basic intellectual schema of what romance is, how it is structured, etc., by those chapters-- and he ends up filling them with many paraphrased illustrations to prove his points, in a whole host of variations and subvarations. Don't get me wrong-- it's good that he backs up his theoretical argument with textual illustrations-- but there's something about these chapters that seems kind of "cyclopedic", like it's just a list of illustration after illustration ad nauseam. Put briefly, I just don't think that those specific chapters *add* anything really to his argument any more than 1-2 well chosen illustrations could have done. His concluding chapter, is also somewhat weak-- in it, he essentially abandons the subject of romance and instead speaks about the merits of literary study and education as a means for coming to understand the "social mythologies" that govern our own art, assumptions, prejudices, etc. in real life. While I agree with him on this point, it's an inappropriate conclusion to a book on *romance*-- and it's a point he makes much better in "The Educated Imagination". All in all, I'd have to say that this book is worth reading if you've already read Frye's classic _The Anatomy of Criticism_ (which discusses romance at good length), but want further exposition-- and maybe a bit more contextualization or illustration. (Or, if you found _Anatomy_ a bit dense, the first chapter of _Secular Scripture_ is a good summary of the *general* viewpoint that Frye outlines in _Anatomy_. It also has an excellent discussion of what "myth" is, and how the term should be understood in a literary context). However, it's not Frye's best-- and it shouldn't be the first work by him you encounter. If your looking for his masterwork, read _Anatomy of Criticism_ which is dense, but immensely rewarding. Or, if you're looking for something more accessible, read _The Educated Imagination_ first. Or even read his specific studies of the Bible, Blake, Shakespeare, etc. It's not that this book is bad, mind you-- but it just isn't his best work. ... Read more

16. Fools of Time: Studies in Shakespearean Tragedy (Alexander Lectures)
by Northrop Frye
Paperback: 121 Pages (1996-02-06)
list price: US$23.95 -- used & new: US$15.75
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Asin: 0802062156
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17. Northrop Frye: A Visionary Life (Canadian Biography)
by Joseph Adamson
 Paperback: 93 Pages (1993-09)
list price: US$9.95 -- used & new: US$4.09
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Asin: 1550221841
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In Northrop Frye: A Visionary Life, Joseph Adamson examines the life and career of a remarkable scholar and teacher and his quest for meaning in mythic forms and biblical symbolism. Highlights of this illustrated biography include: Frye's boyhood in Eastern Canada; his dramatic encounter with the work of William Blake; the impact and importance of Anatomy of Criticism; Frye's gradual development of a theory of culture; and his culminating achievement, after 20 years, of a comprehensive study of the poetic structures of the Bible. ... Read more

18. Spiritus Mundi: Essays on Literature, Myth, and Society
by Northrop Frye
Paperback: 296 Pages (2006-06-20)
list price: US$18.95 -- used & new: US$11.83
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Asin: 1554550106
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This collection of a dozen major essays is vintage Frye - the fine distillation of a lifetime of originative thinking about literature and its context.The essays in Spiritus Mundi are arranged in three groups of four essays each.

The first are about the "contexts of literature", the second are about the "mythological universe", and the last are studies of four of the great visionary or myth-making poets who have been enduring sources of interest for Frye: Milton, Blake, Yeats, and Wallace Stevens.
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19. Blake: A Collection of Critical Essays (Twentieth Century Views)
 Paperback: 183 Pages (1966-06)

Isbn: 0130775452
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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A series of essays on the work of William Blake--including essays by Frye, Harold Bloom, Anthony Blunt, Hazard Adams, David Erdman, John Grant and others. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars William Blake , for heaven's sake,
The editor of this collection Northrop Frye explains in his introductory essay that the true Blake is not the mad, mystic devoid of connection with his own place and time, that he has often been made out to be. Frye writes that Blake was verymuch a product of the darker half of the Enlightentment, that his opposing of the social evils of his time was a strong one.
Frye also collects in this volume essays about Blake's mostpopular literary work, "The Songs of Innocence and Experience" while at the same time giving time and attention to the longer, prophetic works. In one essay Harold Bloom gives an explication of 'The Four Zoas' And in an essay of his own Frye shows how the longer poems relate to, and in a sense evolve out of the shorter ones.
Frye sees Blake as professional graphic artist and illustrator, and as amateur poet, as one whose work touches many different realms of being. He sees him as a great artist- poet whose work will continue to fascinate mankind in the future ahead. ... Read more

20. A Natural Perspective: The Development of Shakespearean Comedy and Romance by Northrop Frye by Northrop Frye by Northrop Frye by Northrop Frye
by Northrop Frye
 Paperback: Pages (1965-01-01)

Isbn: 0156654148
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