Notes on Kenneth Burke’s “The Poetic Process” (1925)

Kenneth Burke, “The Poetic Process,” Counter-Statement, 3rd revised ed. (1931; reprint, Berkeley: University of California Press, 1968), 45–62; originally published in The Guardian 2 (1925): 281–94

Biographical Notes

In a 01 Dec 1940 letter to Malcolm Cowley, Burke reflected on the writing of “The Poetic Process” and its relationship to “Psychology and Form”:

that winter [1924] I stayed at Andover, I wrote two essays, “Psychology and Form” and “The Poetic Process”; it was my intention to round these off with third, “On the Sublime.” I began it, then ran into The Meaning of Meaning [by C. K. Ogden and I. A. Richards, 1923], and was so knocked over that I was unable to write the third essay. And it was not until the “Philosophy of Literary Form” item, the monograph by that name in the forthcoming collection, that I was able to treat of the material for that third essay, though it is there in a much altered state, affected by all that has intervened.


Text Notes