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Editorial Appendix 1. Preface to the Second Edition

Various readers have complained that this book has nothing to do with Criticism, that it contains no Principles, and that it is most Unliterary. The accusations are welcome. Had they been less likely there would have been less reason for writing. Criti­ cism as I understand is the endeavour to discriminate between experiences and to evaluate them. We cannot do this without some understanding of the nature of experience, or without theories of valuation and communication. Such principles as apply in criticism must be taken from these more fundamental studies. All other critical principles are arbitrary, and the history of the subject is a record of their obstructive influence.