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M. H. Abrams Quotes

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M. H. Abrams
July 23, 1912 -
Category: Critic

If you read quickly to get through a poem to what it means, you have missed the body of the poem.


When I was a graduate student, the leading spirits at Harvard were interested in the history of ideas.


Hard work makes easy reading or, at least, easier reading.


The survival of artistic modes in which we recognize ourselves, identify ourselves and place ourselves will survive as long as humanity survives.


It's amazing how, age after age, in country after country, and in all languages, Shakespeare emerges as incomparable.


We are human, and nothing is more interesting to us than humanity.


If you learn one thing from having lived through decades of changing views, it is that all predictions are necessarily false.


Key metaphors help determine what and how we perceive and how we think about our perceptions.


When something startlingly new comes up, young people, especially, seize it. You can't complain about that. I think its heyday has passed, but it's had an effect and will continue to have an effect.


The theories of the major philosophers of the 18th century secular enlightenment were biblical and theological in spite of themselves.


We worked on solving the problem of voice communications in a noisy military environment. We established military codes that are highly audible and invented selection tests for personnel who had a superior ability to recognize sound in a noisy background.


John Updike is always fun. And one of my former students, Tom Pynchon. And Harold Bloom, another former student.


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