Thursday, 8 March 2012

WRITERS ON WRITING #10: Ford Madox Ford

The only human activity that has always been of extreme importance to the world is imaginative literatureIt is of supreme importance because it is the only means by which humanity can express at once emotions and ideas.  To avoid controversy I am perfectly ready to concede that the other arts are of equal importance.  But nothing that is not an art is of any lasting importance at all, the meanest novel being humanly more valuable than the most pompous of factual works, the most formidable of material achievements or the most carefully thought-out of legal codes [Samuel Butler’s] The Way of All Flesh cannot be superseded because it is a record of humanity.  Science changes its aspect as every new investigator gains sufficient publicity to discredit his predecessors.  The stuff of humanity is unchangeable.  I do not expect the lay reader to agree with me in this pronouncement but it would be better for him if he did.  The world would be a clearer place to him.

Return to Yesterday (1931)


Click HERE to read more about FORD MADOX FORD's 1931 memoir Return to Yesterday.

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