Wednesday, December 14, 2005

tradion and literature

“Tradition…involves, in the first place, the historical sense…[which] involves a perception, not only of the pastness of the past, but of its presence; the historical sense compels a man to write not merely with his own generation in his bones, but with a feeling that the whole of the literature of Europe from Homer and within it the whole of the literature of his own country has a simultaneous existence and composes a simultaneous order. This historical sense, which is a sense of the timeless as well as of the temporal and of the timeless and of the temporal together, is what makes a writer traditional. And it is at the same time what makes a writer most acutely conscious of his place in time, of his own contemporaneity.”

--Eliot, from Tradition and Individual Talent

The presence of the past circulating surrounding no one writes or creates in a vaccuum but not simply to follow tradition find one's place within but allow the ideas and influences both overtly and subtly of all of the writing that has come before use this in the moment of creation this will move into the future as those in the future reach back into the past and participate in tradition.

Sounds simple but the problem like Woolf points out is that women writers have no tradition to follow, they must them go back to 'Shakespeare's Sister' and create or imagine the writing she would have done, create the tradition within their present, do the writing that has not yet been done, use a type of retrospective creation, the present and future of women writing will then work itself out...

some preliminary thoughts...for end of the semester writing...

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