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Aristotle: Poetics

Posted on October 4, 2009 in Reading Project

The Poetics has a couple of big advantages over The Ethics. For one thing, it’s shorter. That’s always good with old stuff. Back in the day people weren’t really into keeping things to a reasonable length. Like Dickens. Guy wrote two good books, and they’re his too shortest. Let that be a lesson to all of you.

At any rate, the other advantage is that the assertions aren’t as ontologically grounded. While both books are all about what’s good, talking about good plays is easier to do without sounding sanctimonious. Also, The Poetics includes an intriguing look at early understanding of the parts of speech, including defining nouns and words that don’t require tenses to make sense.

So I don’t know. I’ve never been a big fan of Aristotle, and I definitely haven’t had any changes of heart here.

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3 thoughts on “Aristotle: Poetics”

  • Mary says:

    I haven’t read the Poetics–only the Ethics, but Aristotle gave me a bit of respite last semester in that his writing was so crisp and clear in comparison to some of the others I had to hack through. Kant.

    Two good books? Two? I think the shortest were Hard Times and The Mysteries of Edwin Drood, yes? Well, Edwin Drood was unfinished, to be fair…

  • Mary says:

    I am all for brevity, but Dickens gets dispensation.

  • jmags says:

    I was thinking A Tale of Two Cities and A Christmas Carol, but I’m hardly an expert (even though I play one on the internet.)

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