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OF ISLANDS AND OF ILANDERS: THE EARLY ENLIGHTMENT

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LECTURE 07

(1696 – 1736)

7.1. Философские концепции просветителей и их значение для становления и эволюции новой литературы. Роль публицистики в развитии литературы. Литературный журнал как новое явление: деятельность Джозефа Аддисона и Ричарда Стиля.

7.1.1. The expiry of the Licensing Act in 1695 halted state censorship of the press. During the next 20 years there were to be 10 general elections. These two factors combined to produce an enormous growth in the publication of political literature. Senior politicians saw the potential importance of the pamphleteer in wooing the support of electorate, and numberless hack writers produced copy for the presses. Richer talents also played their part. Writers like Defoe and Swift did not confine themselves to straightforward discursive techniques in their pamphleteering but experimented deftly with mock forms and invented personae to carry the attack home.

According to contemporary testimony, Defoe's Shortest-Way with the Dissenters so brilliantly sustained its impersonation of a High Church extremist that it was at first mistaken for the real thing. This avalanche of political writing whetted the contemporary appetite for reading matter generally and, in the increasing sophistication of its ironic and fictional maneuvers, assisted in preparing the way for the astonishing growth in popularity of narrative fiction during the subsequent decades.

7.1.2.The new development on the literary scene was the advent of literary journals. The beginning is associated with the activities of Sir Richard Steele and Joseph Addison.

Sir Richard Steele, English essayist, playwright, and statesman, founded and contributed frequently to the influential journals. On April 12, 1709, Steele brought out, under pseudonym, the first issue of the Tatler, a triweekly journal featuring essays and brief sketches on politics and society. In addition to his own essays, Steele published a number of papers by the English essayist Joseph Addison, whom he had met during his school days and who became an important colleague and friend. This publication was succeeded by the more famous Spectatorwith both Steele and Addison as contributors. Many of the ideas for articles were Steele's, with Addison filling in the details and polishing the prose. Perhaps the best-known portion comprises a series of essays, which, in the person of a kindly and eccentric old country gentleman, present an idealized portrait of the 18th-century English squire. This character was conceived by Steele and named for an old English dance. When the last issue of the Spectator appeared, Steele had contributed 236 papers and Addison 274.




7.2. Даниэль Дефо как родоначальник реалистического романа. Путь от журналистики к художественному творчеству. Образ нового героя в «Робинзоне Крузо». Воспитательное и социальное значение романа. Авантюрно-плутовские и исторические романы Дефо.

Daniel Defoe(1660-1731) was English novelist and journalist. His work reflects his diverse experiences in many countries and in many walks of life. Besides being a brilliant journalist, novelist, and social thinker, Defoe was a prolific author, producing more than 500 books, pamphlets, and tracts.

Defoe was born in London, the son of a candle merchant named Foe. Daniel added “De” to his name about 1700. He was educated for the Presbyterian ministry but decided to go into business. He became a merchant, and his business gave him frequent opportunities to travel throughout Western Europe.

An opponent of the Roman Catholic King James II, Defoe took an active part in the unsuccessful rebellion led by the Duke of Monmouth against the king. He obtained a government post in 1695 and the same year wrote An Essay upon Projects, a remarkably keen analysis of matters of public concern, such as the education of women.

Especially noteworthy among his writings during the next several years was the satiric poem The True-born Englishman, an attack on beliefs in racial or national superiority, which was directed particularly toward those English people who resented the new king, William III, because he was Dutch.

Defoe anonymously published a tract entitled The Shortest Way with the Dissenters, which satirized religious intolerance by pretending to share the prejudices of the Anglican Church against Nonconformists. When it was found that Defoe had written the tract, he was arrested and given an indeterminate term in jail. During his imprisonment Defoe's business had been ruined, so he turned to journalism for his livelihood.



He issued a news journal entitled The Review, for which he did most of the writing. Defoe wrote strongly in favor of union with Scotland, and his duties as secret agent may have entailed other activities on behalf of union.

Defoe's first and most famous novel, The Life and Strange Surprizing Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, of York, Mariner,appeared in1719, when he was almost 60 years old. The book is commonly known as Robinson Crusoe. A fictional tale of a shipwrecked sailor, it was based on the adventures of a seaman, Alexander Selkirk, who had been marooned on one of the Juan Fernandez Islands off the coast of Chile. The novel, full of detail about Crusoe's ingenious attempts to overcome the hardships of the island, has become one of the classics of children's literature.

More novels followed, including Captain Singleton, and The Fortunes and Misfortunes of Moll Flanders, the adventures of a London prostitute, which is regarded as one of the great English novels. Among his other important writings are A Journal of the Plague Year, Colonel Jack, Roxana, and other works.

7.3. Джонатан Свифт как великий сатирик. Место писателя в английском Просвещении. Специфика сатиры в литературных и антицерковных памфлетах писателя.

Jonathan Swift(1667-1745), Anglo-Irish satirist and political pamphleteer, is considered one of the greatest masters of English prose and one of the most impassioned satirists of human folly and pretension. His many pamphlets, prose, letters, and poetry were all marked by highly effective and economical language.

Swift was born in Dublin and educated at Trinity College in that city. He obtained employment in England as secretary to the diplomat and writer Sir William Temple. Swift's relations with his employer were not amicable, and the young man went back to Ireland, where he took religious orders. He returned to Temple's household in1696. Swift's stay, although frequently marred by quarrels with his employer, gave him the time for an immense amount of concentrated reading and for writing.

Among Swift's earliest prose work was The Battle of the Books, a burlesque of the controversy then raging in literary circles over the relative merits of ancient and modern authors. His Tale of a Tub is the most amusing of his satirical works and the most strikingly original. In it Swift ridiculed with matchless irony various forms of pretentious pedantry, mainly in literature and religion.



We have religion enough to make us hate, but not to make us love one another.

At 46, Swift was appointed dean of Saint Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin. In 1724 and 1725 he anonymously issued his Drapier's Letters, a series of highly effective pamphlets that secured the end of the royal patent granted to an Englishman coining copper halfpence in Ireland. Swift was trying to protect the Irish people from a further debasement of their currency.

For his championship of their cause in these essays and in A Modest Proposal, Swift became a hero of the Irish people. The pamphlet embodies the mordantly ironic suggestion that the children of the Irish poor be sold as food to the wealthy, thus turning an economic burden to general profit.

I do therefore humbly offer it to public consideration that of 120.000 children already computed, 20,000 may be reserved for breed, whereof only one-fourth part to be males; which is more in we allow to sheep, black cattle, or swine; and my reason is, that these children are seldom the fruits of marriage, a circumstance not much regarded by our savages, therefore one male will be sufficient to serve four females. That the remaining 100,000 may at a year old, be offered in sale to the persons of quality and fortune through the kingdom; always advising the mother to let them suck plentifully in the last month, so as to render them plump and fat for a good table. A child will make two dishes at an entertainment for friends; and when the family dines alone, the fore or hind quarter will make a reasonable dish, and seasoned with a little pepper or salt will be very good boiled on the fourth day, especially in winter.

7.4. «Путешествия Гулливера» как пародия на жанр мнимо-подлинных «книг о путешествиях» и сатирическая картина современной европейской действительности. Традиции Свифта в английской и мировой литературе.

Swift's masterpiece, Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World,more popularly titledGulliver's Travels,was published anonymously in1726; it met with instant success. Swift's satire was originally intended as an allegorical and acidic attack on the vanity and hypocrisy of contemporary courts, statesmen, and political parties, but in the writing of his book, which is presumed to have taken more than six years, he incorporated his ripest reflections on human society. Gulliver's Travels is, therefore, a savagely bitter work, mocking all humankind.

As these noble Houyhnhnms are endowed by Nature with a general Disposition to all Virtues, and have no Conceptions or Ideas of what is evil in a rational Creature; so their grand Maxim is, to cultivate Reason, and to be wholly governed by it. Neither is Reason among them a Point problematical as with us, where Men can argue with Plausibility on both Sides of a Question; but strikes you with immediate Conviction; as it must needs do where it is not mingled, obscured, or discoloured by Passion and Interest. I remember it was with extreme Difficulty that I could bring my Master to understand the Meaning of the Word Opinion, or how a Point could be disputable; because Reason taught us to affirm or deny only where we are certain; and beyond our Knowledge we cannot do either. So that Controversies, Wranglings, Disputes, and Positiveness in false or dubious Propositions, are Evils unknown among the Houyhnhnms. In the like Manner when I used to explain to him our several Systems of Natural Philosophy, he would laugh that a Creature pretending to Reason, should value itself upon the Knowledge of other Peoples Conjectures, and in Things, where that Knowledge, if it were certain, could be of no Use. Wherein he agreed entirely with the Sentiments of Socrates, as Plato delivers them; which I mention as the highest Honour I can do that Prince of Philosophers. I have often since reflected what Destruction such a Doctrine would make in the Libraries of Europe; and how many Paths to Fame would be then shut up in the Learned World.

Friendship and Benevolence are the two principal Virtuesamong the Houyhnhnms; and these not confined to particular Objects, but universal to the whole Race. For, a Stranger from the remotest Part, is equally treated with the nearest Neighbour, and where-ever he goes, looks upon himself as at home. They preserve Decency and Civility in the highest Degrees, but are altogether ignorant of Ceremony. They have no Fondness for their Colts or Foles; but the Care they take in educating them proceedeth entirely from the Dictates of Reason. And, I observed my Master to shew the same Affection to his Neighbour's Issue that he had for his own. They will have it that Nature teaches them to love the whole Species, and it is Reason only that maketh a Distinction of Persons, where there is a superior Degree of Virtue.



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