Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Stein's Compostion as Explanation

I really enjoyed reading Stein's essay, "Composition as Explanation." While her style of writing is somewhat convoluted at times, I think she makes several compelling points in this essay. Her theory, for example, of how a classic becomes accepted is important to understanding relative concepts such as how literature becomes canonized. Though she speaks in somewhat estoteric terms about beauty as a concept, I think one could as easily replace that word with poetry. Somehow, I felt like she was speaking very directly about the asthetics of poetry.

"If one were not so indolent they would realize that beauty is beauty even when it is irritating and stimulating not only when it is accepted and classic" (21). It seems particularly useful advice in our own study of literature and why we study certain authors, poets, writers -- how we come to view their work as classic. Much of that seems to be based on the conventional 'wisdom' of a select few (i.e.-Pound?) who hail the stars of a new generation. It made me think about how much goes unread, unrecognized, or unseen for its beauty. (Until, hopefully, someone claims it one fine day). ;)

No comments: