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Negative Capability

  ‘Negative capability’ was Keats\'s phrase for the state of receptivity required for artistic, and specifically literary, creation. The author should open himself or herself up to all experience, become the person or thing being written about. Keats himself named Shakespeare as the prime instance of negative capability in English literature. In Keats\'s own century, Flaubert and Tolstoy both aspired to the condition, and more recent times have been blessed by Proust\'s magnificent failure to do so. As to Keats himself, the critical jury is, perhaps, still out. KMcL  



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Other Terms : Innate Ideas | Parallel Computing | Spontaneous Generation
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