Hazlitt as a romantic essayist

Further Reading
Albrecht, ., Hazlitt and the Creative Imagination, Lawrence: University of Kansas
Press, 1965 (original edition, 1953) Baker, Herschel, William Hazlitt, Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1962
Bate, Walter Jackson, “William Hazlitt,” in Criticism: The Major Texts, New York: Harcourt Brace, 1970
Bromwich, David, Hazlitt: The Mind of a Critic, New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1983
Bullitt, John M., “Hazlitt and the Romantic Conception of the Imagination,” Philological Quarterly 24 (1945):343–61
Chase, Stanley P., “Hazlitt as a Critic of Art,” PMLA 39 (1924): 179–202
Good, Graham, “Hazlitt: Ventures of the Self,” in his The Observing Self: Rediscovering the Essay, London and New York: Routledge, 1988:71–89
Ireland, Alexander, William Hazlitt, Essayist and Critic: Selections from His Writings with a Memoir, Biographical and Critical, London and New York: Warne, 1889
Kinnaird, John, William Hazlitt: Critic of Power, New York: Columbia University Press, 1978
Mahoney, John L., The Logic of Passion: The Literary Criticism of William Hazlitt, New York: Fordham University Press, revised edition, 1981
Nabholtz, John R., editor, “My Reader My Fellow-Labourer”: A Study of English Romantic Prose, Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 1986
O’Hara, ., “Hazlitt and the Function of Imagination,” PMLA 81 (1956):552–62
Park, Roy, Hazlitt and the Spirit of the Age: Abstraction and Critical Theory, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1971
Schneider, Elisabeth, The Aesthetics of William Hazlitt: A Study of the Philosophical Basis of His Criticism, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1933
Zeitlin, Jacob, Hazlitt on English Literature: An Introduction to the Appreciation of Literature, New York: Oxford University Press, 1913

Arthur Lovejoy attempted to demonstrate the difficulty of defining Romanticism in his seminal article "On The Discrimination of Romanticisms" in his Essays in the History of Ideas (1948); some scholars see Romanticism as essentially continuous with the present, some like Robert Hughes see in it the inaugural moment of modernity , [34] and some like Chateaubriand , Novalis and Samuel Taylor Coleridge see it as the beginning of a tradition of resistance to Enlightenment rationalism—a "Counter-Enlightenment"— [35] [36] to be associated most closely with German Romanticism . An earlier definition comes from Charles Baudelaire : "Romanticism is precisely situated neither in choice of subject nor exact truth, but in the way of feeling." [37]

In the "Preface" Hazlitt establishes his focus on "characters" by quoting Pope 's comment that "every single character in Shakespear, is as much an individual, as those in life itself". [26] After reviewing various other critics of Shakespeare, Hazlitt focuses on two of the most important, including the influential Dr. Johnson. Hazlitt found the Shakespearean criticism of Johnson, the premier literary critic of the previous era, troubling in several ways. He insufficiently valued the tragedies; he missed the essence of much of the poetry; and he "reduced everything to the common standard of conventional propriety [...] the most exquisite refinement or sublimity produced an effect on his mind, only as they could be translated into the language of measured prose". [27] Johnson also believed that every character in Shakespeare represents a "type" or "species", [28] whereas Hazlitt, siding with Pope, emphasised the individuality of Shakespeare's characters, while discussing them more comprehensively than anyone had yet done.

Hazlitt as a romantic essayist

hazlitt as a romantic essayist


hazlitt as a romantic essayisthazlitt as a romantic essayisthazlitt as a romantic essayisthazlitt as a romantic essayist