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An Ideal Critic: His Qualifications and Functions Qualification Superior Sensibility Superior sensibilitythe capacity to receive impression from

the work of artis a natural gift of an ideal critic. He possesses it in a greater degree than a common man. The Habit of Wide Reading/ Erudition Erudition or the wide reading is necessary for a critic. It increases understanding and widens the mental horizens of a critic. But the real real value of erudition is that the previous impression, which are stored in the mind, derived from reading are modified by the new impression. In this way the older impressions are represhed by new impressions, and a system of impression is formed which enables the critic to make generalized statement of literary beauty. Such generalising power is necessay for an ideal critic, and he can get it only through erudition and the habit of wide reading. Objective/ Impersonal An ideal critic must be entirely objective and impersonal in the pursuit of truth. He must have some canons and principles, and mut be not be satisfied with vague and emotional impressions. Emotional and impressionistic critics are great corruptors of taste, says Eliot. He also gives the example of two imperfect critics: Arthur Symmons is imperfect critic because he is too impressionistic and subjective, while Arnold is too dry, intellectual and abstract. Eliot regards Aristotle as an instance of a perfect critic for the defects which are in the above mentioned critics.

A Highly Developed Sense of Fact An ideal critic must have a highly developed sense of fact. By sense of fact Eliot means various technical aspects and details of a poem such as its condition, setting and genesis etc. The Tools of a Critic: Comparison and Analysis Comparison and analysis are the chief tools of a critic, but these tools can be used effectively if the critic knows the facts about the work which is to be compared and analysed. A good critic must not compare and the writers of the present with the past in order to pass judgment, but he must compare them in order to elucidate the qualities of the work under criticism. He must not try to judge the present by the standards of the past. The requirements of each age are different, and so the cannons of art must change from age to age. He must be liberal in his outlook, and must be prepared to correct and revise his views from time to time, in the light of new facts A Highly developed sense of Tradition A critic must also have a highly developed sense o! tradition. He must be learned not only in the literature of his own country, but in the literature of Europe down from Homer to his own day. Thorough Knowledge of Poetic Creation An ideal critic must have thorough understanding of the poetic process and poetic creation. That is why, Eliot says that a poet is the best critic because he can effectively communicate his understanding to the reader. A Great Command Over Potic Language

An ideal critic must have a thorough understanding of the language and structure of a poem. He also have an idea of the music of poetry, for a communicates as much through rhe meaning words as through their sound.