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The creation of literature demands the united effort of mind and heart and will. The study of literature also demands the united effort of mind and heart and will. Analytic or critical study alone calls forth only mental effort. Creative study makes demands upon the emotions and the will. No literature has been truly studied or its beauty truly felt until it has been studied for interpretive or creative reading.
In the study for interpretation the mind must dwell longer on the thought, and in consequence must find deeper meaning in it.
In the effort to interpret the thought, the thought in a flash seems to be the speaker's own, emotion is aroused, and a finer appreciation of the thought developed.
Interpretation demands not only understanding and emotion, but also will power. A noble interpretation of any great work of literature makes great demands upon the speaker's will power. The giving of uplifting thought to others develops the mind and heart and will.
The mind finds its expression through voice and body; hence these agents of expression should be trained to act in harmony with the mind.
All study of reading, when the realm of literature is entered, should lead to an intellectual and spiritual understanding of the selection studied. Like all art, reading should be sincere and natural.
This volume is designed as a text-book on reading and speaking, in colleges, normal schools, and secondary schools.
Rhetoric and this method of study for interpretation are so correlated that the illustrative material here used will doubtless be of service to teachers of English as well as to teachers of reading.
The author wishes to express her appreciation of the courtesy of the following publishers for permission to use material published by them: Messrs. Little, Brown & Co.; Messrs. Maynard, Merrill & Co.; Messrs. Lee & Shepard; Messrs. Harper; Messrs. A. C. McClurg & Co.; Messrs. Houghton, Mifflin & Co.; the Fleming H. Revell Company, and Messrs. Edgar S. Werner & Co.
She wishes to acknowledge her indebtedness to Mr. Booker T. Washington for permission to use an extract from one of his speeches; to Dr. A. R. Taylor, president of James Milliken University, and to Mr. Frank Nelson, state superintendent of public instruction, Kansas, for their criticism of, and suggestions in regard to, her manuscript; and to Dr. C. W. Emerson, who first led her to discover the true principles of the art of expression.