Nature, Poetry, And The Role Of The Criticism Essay

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Nature, Poetry, and the Role of the Criticism
What is the purpose of poetry? This question has been debated within the literary realm for centuries. However, Joseph Addison and Alexander Pope provided an answer to this question. Addison addresses the topic of poetry and art in his writings for The Spectator while Pope’s views on the subject can be found in “An Essay on Criticism.” Both authors address the role that nature plays in art while assessing how the two compare. These two authors also provide instructions for the production of good poetry. While the art of a poet is discussed, the art of criticism is also examined with equal importance. Addison and Pope believed that criticism played an important role in the creation of art and poetry. While critics are often seen as the enemies of writers, these authors paint a relationship between the two with mutual benefit. Addison and Pope attempt to define the purpose of both poetry and criticism while presenting instructions and warnings for both the poet and the critic.
A poet’s purpose for writing must first be understood to fully understand his role. Joseph Addison addresses the purpose of art in relation to nature in one of his articles in The Spectator: “If we consider the works of nature and art, as they are qualified to entertain the imagination, we shall find the last very defective, in comparison of the former…” (Addison 432). It is the job of the artist to entertain the imagination. However, Addison claims that this…

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