An Aristotelian Theory of Comedy with an Adaptation of the Poetics

Cooper, L. An Aristotelian theory of comedy with an adaptation of the Poetics and a translation of the "Tractatus Coislinianus", Oxford, 1924.


” This book has a primary aim in general, and a secondary aim in part. 1st of all, as a companion volume to my ‘Amplified Version’  of Aristotle on the Art of Poetry,  it is intended to be useful to the general students of literature. As the poetics of Aristotle helps one to understand Greek tragedy and the epic poem, and, if employed with care, modern tragedy and the serious novel, so, it is hoped, the present volume will help college students and others to understand comedies, in particular those dramas that have something in them of the Aristophanic  type; and to help in that understanding, not by Anna Leverett’s investigation of origins, and not with regard to dramatic structure apart from a the design of the comic poet to affect his audience, but directly and with reference to that design. The work is practical, then, in its aim to serve students of English and the like. It is offered to the public by one who actually believes in utilizing the riches of the ancient classics for the direct benefit of contemporary life and culture.  That the Poetics is useful—not merely interesting in historical perspective—needs no demonstration to those who have employed it with classes in the ancient and modern drama. I can only hope that my Aristotelian theory of comedy may prove useful in the same way, if not in the same measure.”

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