Northrop Frye's Notebooks for Anatomy of Critcism

Northrop Frye's Notebooks for Anatomy of Critcism

Edited by Robert D. Denham
Volume: 23
Copyright Date: 2007
Pages: 480
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.3138/j.ctt1287t23
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  • Book Info
    Northrop Frye's Notebooks for Anatomy of Critcism
    Book Description:

    This fully annotated volume contains seventeen holograph notebooks, each illuminating some aspect of the grand structure that eventually emerged. Altogether, the notebooks offer an intimate picture of Frye's working process and a renewed appreciation for his magisterial accomplishment.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-2754-3
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Preface
    (pp. ix-xii)
  4. Abbreviations and Shortened Forms
    (pp. xiii-xvi)
  5. Introduction
    (pp. xvii-xxvi)

    The notebooks forAnatomy of Criticismtrace Frye’s labyrinthine and often fitful journey to bring that book to completion. Unlike his other major books—Fearful Symmetry,The Great Code, andWords with Power—the Anatomy was created in part from essays previously written. The first hint we have of Frye’s contemplating the use of material already published is in Notebook 7.99, where he considers beginning the book with his 1949 essay “The Function of Criticism at the Present Time.” In the “Prefatory Statements” to the Anatomy he lists thirteen other essays, written over a twelve-year period, that he revised, expanded,...

  6. Published and Forthcoming Notebooks
    (pp. xxvii-2)
  7. Notebook 7
    (pp. 3-112)

    This notebook was written over the course of a decade—between the time Fearful Symmetry was published and the appearance ofAnatomy of Criticism. In paragraph 52 Frye refers to beginningnel mezzo del cammin, and there seems to be no reason not to take him literally: he was thirty-five in 1947. The notebook contains a number of references to articles Frye wrote in the late 1940s and early 1950s. Between entries 80 and 81 he entered the date “1948,” so it seems reasonable to assume that the first eighty entries were written in 1947. In paragraph 99 Frye refers to...

  8. Notebook 37
    (pp. 113-127)

    Internal evidence suggests that Frye began writing in this notebook in 1949, put it aside, and then picked it up again in the mid-1950s. In paragraph 5 he refers to his recent paper on church and society, which was published in 1949. In paragraph 7 he writes, “If I get the Guggenheim . . . .” He received the Guggenheim in 1950. Paragraph 49 appears to contain a reference to his 1954 lectures at Princeton, and the reference to “AC” in paragraph 52 puts the date of that entry sometime after October 1955, when NF had not yet decided on...

  9. Notebook 38
    (pp. 128-156)

    This notebook is difficult to date with precision, but because Frye has the main contours of his theory of symbols fairly clearly worked out, the first part appears to date from about 1952 or 1953. But the final essay of theAnatomythat Frye had to work out—the theory of genres—gets fairly extended treatment toward the end of the notebook, and these sections were doubtless written later, perhaps in 1954 or 1955. In Notebook 35 Frye refers to material in the present notebook; at least parts of parts of the former, then, were written later. Several pages of the notebook,...

  10. [Notes for Anatomy of Criticism]
    (pp. 157-158)
  11. Notebook 35
    (pp. 159-204)

    Many, perhaps most, of the entries in this notebook date from 1952 and early 1953. The material in the notebook following the final entry of what is transcribed here is a series of drafts and revisions of the text ofAnatomy of Criticism.The numbers and letters (in black ink) that Frye inserted immediately above most of the entries (in blue ink) appear to have been added sometime later: they apparently refer to various sections and chapters in his outline of theAnatomyat this stage. The notebook is in the NFF, 1991, box 26. It has “Records” printed on...

  12. Notebook 36
    (pp. 205-259)

    Internal evidence indicates that most of this notebook was written during 1953. Some of the later entries might come from 1954. In paragraph 7 Frye refers to his article “Characterization in Shakespearean Comedy,” which was published in 1953. He indicates that he wants to seeHigh Noon, which was released in 1952, so the notebook was obviously written after that. In paragraph 73 he refers to an article that was published in the Summer 1953 issue of theYale Review. The numbers that are centred above many of the entries, representing chapter numbers and sections within chapters forAnatomy of...

  13. Notebook 18
    (pp. 260-299)

    Internal evidence indicates that this notebook was written during the years 1956 to 1962.1 It was first published in theNorthrop Frye Newsletter, 9, no. 1 (Winter 2001–2): 2–28. The notebook, bound in a blue leatherette cover and measuring 17.8 x 11.2 cm., is in the NFF, 1991, box 24....

  14. Notebook 30d
    (pp. 300-308)

    This is an early Anatomy of Criticism notebook, one in which Frye focuses on the theory of modes while trying to work out the relation of his five modes to the other parts of the theory, especially to the chapters on meaning, the quest myth, and genres (which eventually became the Second, Third, and Fourth Essays of the book). The reference to an “unfinished paper on the modes” in paragraph 14 means that that the notebook was written before the publication of that paper in 1953. Frye wrote “III.” on the recto of the front cover. After paragraph 31 is...

  15. Notebook 30e
    (pp. 309-317)

    This brief notebook, written after February 1952, is devoted to Frye’s reflections on what became his theory of symbols in the Second Essay ofAnatomy of Criticism.It also includes a draft of Frye’s essay “The Instruments of Mental Production”(StS,3–21), as well as a draft of chapter 1 ofFT, neither of which is reproduced here. Frye wrote “II.” on the recto of the front cover, and the diagram on p. 310 comes from the verso of the front cover. The notebook, bound in manila paper wrappers with a green cloth spine and measuring 21.8 x 13.8 cm.,...

  16. Notebook 30f
    (pp. 318-320)

    This brief notebook treats chiefly material developed in the Third Essay of theAnatomy. Frye wrote “IV.” on the recto of the front cover. Bound in manila paper wrappers with a green cloth spine and measuring 21.8 x 13.8 cm., the notebook is in the NFF, 1991, box 25....

  17. Notebook 30g
    (pp. 321-323)

    This brief notebook contains themes developed in the Fourth Essay of the Anatomy. Frye wrote “Six.” on the recto of the front cover. The entries transcribed here are followed by a series of cancelled drafts for Frye’s essays and chapters of books. The notebook, bound in manila paper wrappers with a green cloth spine and measuring 21.8 x 13.8 cm., is in the NFF, 1991, box 25....

  18. Notebook 30h
    (pp. 324-326)

    These are notes on what Frye conceived at one point as a separate chapter (he wrote “Seven.” on the recto of the front cover) on scripture as an encyclopedic epic. Part of the material here, as sketchy as it is, became incorporated into the section on “Thematic Modes” in the First Essay ofAnatomy of Criticismand part into the Fourth Essay. The notebook, bound in manila paper wrappers with a green cloth spine and measuring 21.8 x 13.8 cm., is in the NFF, 1991, box 25....

  19. Notebook 30i
    (pp. 327-329)

    Frye wrote “Nine.” on the recto of the front cover of this notebook, representing a section or chapter number, which at this point was devoted to his study of genres. Following the entries here is a draft paragraph of Frye’s review of Robert Graves,Collected Poems. The notebook, bound in manila paper wrappers with a green cloth spine and measuring 21.8 x 13.8 cm., is in the NFF, 1991, box 25....

  20. Notebook 30j
    (pp. 330-331)

    Frye wrote “Ten.” on the recto of the front cover of this brief notebook, referring to the tenth chapter in his outline at the time forAnatomy of Criticism.Following the first three paragraphs transcribed here are drafts of Frye’s preface to Peter Fisher,The Valley of Vision (M&B,313–15), and one of his poetry reviews for theUniversity of Toronto Quarterly(C,91–229).These are followed by entry 4 below. The notebook, bound in manila paper wrappers with a green cloth spine and measuring 21.8 x 13.8 cm., is in the NFF, 1991, box 25....

  21. Notebook 30k
    (pp. 332-334)

    These notes focus on material that eventually made its way into the Fourth Essay ofAnatomy of Criticism, especially the Introduction to that essay and the section on “The Rhetoric of Nonliterary Prose.” The notebook, bound in manila paper wrappers with a green cloth spine and measuring 21.8 x 13.8 cm., is in the NFF, 1991, box 25....

  22. Notebook 30l
    (pp. 335-340)

    This notebook contains an outline of five chapters of an early version of Anatomy of Criticism.The chapter numbers here (entries 1, 4, 6, 13, and 15) were originally “two” through “six,” but at some point Frye marked through these numbers and changed them to “three” through “seven.” Paragraphs 15 and 16 are separated in the notebook by four pages of cancelled drafts, and the remainder of the notebook consists of cancelled drafts ofAnatomymaterial and a talk on Auden. The notebook, bound in manila paper wrappers with a green cloth spine and measuring 21.8 x 13.8 cm., is...

  23. Notebook 30o-a
    (pp. 341-346)

    This notebook contains, in addition to the entries reproduced here, drafts of Frye’s 1945 essay on liberal education (WE,40–9) and of his 1947 review of F.S.C. Northrop’sThe Meeting of East and West (NFMC,197–200).It also contains six paragraphs of speculations about a cosmic Bardo novel (FM,150– 2),the writing of which Frye had entertained during his early years. In the absence of other clues for dating this notebook, it is not unreasonable to assume that it comes from the 1940s. Even though Frye has a two-part outline of archetypes in entry 8, the notebook contains no...

  24. Notebook 30q
    (pp. 347-350)

    The bulk of this notebook contains drafts of the introduction to the Rinehart Milton (1951) that Frye edited (M&B,3–23),and a review of Joseph Pieper’s book on leisure.1 It contains as well a brief outline of the book on Spenser that Frye planned to write before theAnatomypushed it aside. The notebook dates, therefore, from the early 1950s. What follows are extracts from the beginning of the notebook (entries 1–3) and a chart of the cycle of Christ (entry 4) from the end of the notebook. The book titles in the first entry form a reading list Frye...

  25. Notes
    (pp. 351-412)
  26. Index
    (pp. 413-450)