A Dish of Orts Paperback – August 16, 2004
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- Publisher : Wildside Press (August 16, 2004)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 212 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1557422796
- ISBN-13 : 978-1557422798
- Item Weight : 13.4 ounces
- Dimensions : 6 x 0.53 x 9 inches
Best Sellers Rank:
#15,722,059 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #260,511 in Classic Literature & Fiction
- Customer Reviews:
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"The Fantastic Imagination," which closes the volume, is probably the most often quoted and referenced of the pieces in "A Dish of Orts," and rightly so, since it bears directly upon writing symbolic, mythological fairy-tale-style fiction. And there is a piece which deserves to be carefully studied by more readers. It does not open "A Dish of Orts" but it is near the beginning, and it is titled:
"A Sketch of Individual Development."
Literature professor and critic Richard H Reis, who distinguished himself with a small pithy book reviewing George MacDonald's writing (titled George MacDonald), makes much of "A Sketch of Individual Development," quoting it heavily. Reis' opinion is that this essay anticipates modern psychology in general, and Freud and Jung in particular. Although MacDonald, always religious and mystical, orients "development" towards development of the spirit and the soul as well as the personality, he also proves himself a keen observer of infancy and childhood, describing an infantile attachment to parent figures followed by the struggle for individuation. I rather doubt that MacDonald was taught this stuff in divinity school, nor earlier as a chemistry and science major in Aberdeen. MacDonald has studied from the school of life, and has responded to his studies from the vantage point of a soul wiser and more insightful than the majority of his fellow men in his time and place.
"A Sketch of Individual Development" is difficult to read; it is like cracking a nut to get at the meat inside. I recommend first reviewing Richard Reis' analysis and breakdown of the essay, in Reis' book, and then using this as a guide to MacDonald's lengthy, heavy piece of writing. Not for the faint of heart, or the immature, or those wanting in patience -- but infinitely rewarding.