I've not read the book you quote from.
One problem with making sense of this passage is that the word
"discrimination" means rather radically different things in different
contexts. If I remember correctly it is a very positive word in Leavis's
early criticism (Revaluation & The Great Tradition) -- it refers to the
exercise of a well-honed sensibility in 'discriminating' good from bad
poetry. Of course for the most part now it refers to discrimination against
people. But if we take it in the positive sense, then he is saying that (1)
Every is totally lacking in literary discrimination and (2) by implication
that is true of all those who claim to bring a Christian sensibility to the
task of discriminating live from dead poetry. Something like that.
Off hand I would say there is something wrong with a "discrimination" that
sees Hard Times as Dickens's only 'real' novel. Leavis never escaped the
David Boyd: Might anyone know what's meant by the term Leavis used in this
> some of his 1940s venom, 'Christian Discrimination'?
> - maybe just a term for positive discrimination, by Christians, for
I have already had reason for concluding that Christian Discrimination is a
decidedly bad thing. Bro, George Every's little book, Poetry and Personal
Responsibility, has the air of having been designed defiantly to justify
that conclusion. It can be recommended for a brief perusal as showing
unambiguously what in the concrete Christian Discrimination is, and where
its logic leads. One might, after looking through the book, start by asking
why Mr Every has devoted so much time to poetry, and to creative literature
in general, since (I hope I may be forgiven for saying) he shows no
compelling interest in it, and no aptitude for its study.....
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