AD's English Literature : What is called an Anthology? The Modern Age in the History of English Literature: How can it be Anthologied?

What is called an Anthology? The Modern Age in the History of English Literature: How can it be Anthologied?



"A well chosen anthology is a complete dispensary of medicine for the more common mental disorders, and may be used as much for prevention as cure."
Robert Graves (1895 - 1985)



Anthology whose origin is in Greek means “flower gathering”. However, in literary context, Anthology is a book consisting of a series of literary selections, usually from various authors and usually of literary value. Such collections have been compiled since antiquity.

NAME
CONTENT
AUTHOR/ EDITOR
DATE
Meleager of Gadara’s anthology
Poems by himself and 46 earlier Greek poets.
Meleager of Gadara
90 bc (Greek)
Tottel's Miscellany
Poetry collection of Nicholas Grimald, Thomas Wyatt, Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey
Richard Tottel
1557
Golden Treasury of English Songs and Lyrics
reflects the tastes and attitudes of the Victorian era
Francis Turner Palgrave
1861
The Oxford Book of English Verse
Collection of poetry of different age
various
1900; 1939; 1972


Now coming to the point, if we are going to anthologize The Modern Age, it would be interesting. Don't take the choices into great counts. Rather the point of arguments should be set in perfect rhythm. The Modern Age in the history of English literature is invested with great importance, indicating as it does a landmark or development and expansion. Indeed, the present century of space-age as it is very often loosely but rightly called, had found a vivid and panoramic reflection in the literature of the age. Even a closer observation of the wide range and astonishing variety of the modern literature is a formidably stupendous task, not to speak of scrutiny and analysis.
Scope in any literary anthology  is extremely narrow and it is more so, because the articles or analysis are confined to the reader's interest  and further limited by the specific format which is again conditioned by growing demand of the readers for such substantial aid, guidance and critical appreciation, as this blog has to offer in plethora abundance. 

In any  ideal literary anthology various significant aspects of some of the representative works of a host of eminent celebrities in the domain of modern literature will have to be elaborately dealt with and particular care must have to be taken to make the approach rather appreciative than critical and the contents have to be presented with profuse illustrations, strewn throughout the entire anthology.

 The analytical style is to be marked by linguistic simplicity and lucidity of expression and the matter has to be arranged in a methodical manner, keeping in view the fundamental objectives of bringing the anthology to publication. For example,  Adequate critical highlight has to be focused according to my choice,  on O. Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, V. Woolf’s To the Lighthouse, D. H. Lawrence’s Sons and Lovers, E. M. Forster’s A Passage to India, Lytton Strachey’s Queen Victoria, Galsworth’s The Man of Property, G. B. Shaw’s Man and Superman, W. B. Yeats’s Selected Poetry, T. S. Eliot’s Murder in the Cathedral and so on and so forth.Even though these are my personal favourite, many editors will find them binding.
It is admittedly true that readers wield an important but apparently invisible key—a key to the success of a literary anthology. It is gratifying to note the reception accorded to the preceding volumes of the series of any literary anthology. If the cherished anthology can technically prove itself to be of similar utility to the abutments of English literature the endeavour put forth by the editor will be esteemed successful, because in the penultimate analysis, this is the criterion by which the recondite quality and the intrinsic merit of a book of this sort is evaluated.

 Ardhendu De    

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