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Thread: How do you define "free verse"?

  1. #46
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    Thanks again, J.
    "Line breaks" -- that is the dominant theme. If you bring "enjambment" into the mix, that's another feature that might distinguish the thing from "prose." And you also offer a rule of thumb--try to set the lines in conventional "prose" form without the line breaks: if it works better WITH the line breaks, then it is "free verse" indeed, not prose.

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    No worries, Aunt,
    Yes, the more typical elements, easier to distinguish. I guess it is a rule of thumb, a good one for writers, hard to define, but if the effect caused by the text is altered by the line breakers, you can consider it verse. It is not perfect, but give you ground to walk.

  3. #48
    King of Dreams MorpheusSandman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AuntShecky View Post
    If and when we can come up with a workable definition of free verse upon which the consensus would more or less agree, optimally it could be applied universally --to the works of both "real" modern poets and poetasters such as yours fooly.
    We have a workable definition of free verse upon which the consensus agrees; it's the one printed in Dictionary.com and Merriam-Webster... and you are no poetaster, my dear.

    Quote Originally Posted by AuntShecky View Post
    The "poem," or whatever it should be called, is #462 in the thread, appearing here.

    An astute LitNutter whose opinions I thoroughly respect characterized it as "prose" in response #464. I wasn't at all "hurt" by his observation, despite the fact that I'd worked on the darn thing for a full three weeks ,and it hadn't been something that I'd "dashed off" in a matter of minutes.

    I've been a LitNutter for over six years, and in that time I've noticed that the majority of contributions on the "Personal Poetry" forum by other LitNutters have been non-traditional, non-metered, unrhymed verse. A very small number of responses to these poems criticize them for being "prose."

    But I really wanted to know what exactly constitutes "free verse," and how it differs from "prose," which ,when one is attempting to write "poetry," sounds pedestrian and mundane.
    Firstly, I agree that b|v is typically a very astute, eloquent, well-learned reader and critic of poetry, but I have no compunction saying that he's dead wrong here. I think what he means by calling it "prose" is that it reads like a narrative (which it is) as opposed to a lyric (which it isn't), and there's often a tendency to associate narrative more with prose than poetry today because of the dominance of narratives being in novel form (especially when most of the famous narrative poems one can name are in verse). Secondly, I agree with JCamilo that you most certainly use line-breaks in a substantial way in this poem. Even with a cursory reading I notice several patterns of both syntax and sound that the line-breaks create (eg, the echo of "leftOVER and thUNDER" in L4 and L6 that is strengthened by being placed at the end of the lines). Thirdly, even without these patterns and affects created by the line breaks, I'd STILL call it free-verse even if read no differently than chopped-up, banal prose. As has been mentioned, prose can contain the most heightened, flowery, sound/rhythm dominated language imaginable, such as in Joyce, but it's still very much prose even if it extremely "poetic." Similarly, even if your free-verse was entirely prose-like, it would still be free-verse, even if it wasn't good free-verse (which I think it is).

    Quote Originally Posted by AuntShecky View Post
    Thanks again, J.
    "Line breaks" -- that is the dominant theme. If you bring "enjambment" into the mix, that's another feature that might distinguish the thing from "prose." And you also offer a rule of thumb--try to set the lines in conventional "prose" form without the line breaks: if it works better WITH the line breaks, then it is "free verse" indeed, not prose.
    The problem with your last sentence is this: whom is to say whether or not it works better with line breaks? That's the problem I was referring to about creating a definition that relies on a subjective reaction. If someone doesn't think the line-breaks make it work better, why not just let them call it "bad free verse" instead of "prose"?
    "As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being." --Carl Gustav Jung

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  4. #49
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    I hear ya, MS ^ and thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MorpheusSandman View Post
    I don’t think you got my point. People calling Pluto “not a planet” DID NOT CHANGE ANYTHING ABOUT PLUTO. All it did was change how our cognitive linguistic map was wired. Similarly, calling Baudelaire’s work “prose poems” DOES NOT MAKE IT ANY CLOSER TO FARTHER TO OTHER OBJECTS WE CALL POETRY. All it did was change (for some) how their cognitive linguistic map was wired.
    I has nothing to do with people not understanding you. It is hilarious that you keep claiming a definition must be definitive and you start you post exactly proving definitions change. It is hilarious that you go with sweeping generalisations as if your argument is universal and end in completely contraditory arguments. But yes, People do not understand Humpty Dumpty.

    I’m far from the only person in those two hundred years to claim that the term is an oxymoron and shouldn’t exist.
    Really? And? You are not an authority, those people either. More, you are not the first person to try to change a definition.

    It was the view up until the middle of the 19th century and still is for the vast majority of poetry readers, and I contend there’s absolutely no good reason to change it. I’m well aware Princeton writes a great deal more on the subject, but even if you take what they wrote: “Poetry, most of us would say, is something else, something less definite…” well, the entire point of having definitions is to be, well, definitive! Speaking of yet another oxymoron, you can’t (or, at least, shouldn’t) have an “indefinite definition,” especially when you can have one that IS definite and actually has some practical application.
    I could go that academic definitions are always open to questioning. That the object described is not -as you with your failed analogy with Pluto - something that "stays the same" (Poetry clearly changes with cultures). I could point that actually the first definition of poetry do not deal with verses, so if things were definitive, then your definition is the one "wrong' in changing. The definition means more to define than definitive forever. That the word redefine proves that definition changes. That being accepted by most people does not means it is a specialist accepts it - and the whole point of Authority as you claim is working with specialist opiinions, after all, we all know appeal to majority is a typical logical fallacy. But the point is you claimed your definition is supported by THE Princeton Guide while it does not.

    No, the distinction is made complex by people that have a distaste for such definitiveness and prefer connotations to denotations. Like I said, we have definitions that work perfectly well if people were content with leaving them alone, but poets love to screw with language, hence the fact that they’ve refused to leave it alone. But take this:
    If we are going to leave alone, then we are not going to bring your definition. And it does not work well. You are dodging but you just cann't apply you definition to old forms of poetry that had no verse (as Zulu poetry), since you cannot identify versification in poems like Gilgamesh or Biblical poetry, since it cannot account for poetic forms and the development of prose since XIX century. A definition that cannot reach the real limits of the object like yours - it is more what the word means - fails. Yours failed.

    Yes, it it POSSIBLE to have poetry not set in lines, IF one defines poetry in terms of something else besides form. What I’ve been arguing is that we SHOULDN’T DO THIS. Further, I’ve argued WHY we shouldn’t do this. Two major reasons:

    1. We have two definitions that ARE definitive, work extremely well, and actually rely on something that’s objective about the text that allows us to clearly demarcate one from the other because they are simultaneously incompatible.
    Refused because you either has no academic training reggarding definitions or you have no idea what the world means. Also you do not have to settle for a definition that cannot objectively include all object being described.

    2. If we choose to redefine them it will be at the expense of 1. and for the benefit of other things that are NOT mutually exclusive (at best) and, at worst, are entirely subjective.
    Nobody is using terms mutually exclusive.

    Why in the world would you want to “redefine” something by trading the former for the latter?

    But who cares? I never denied such a thing. However, are you really denying that verse = poetry is still the majority view and the definition that most clearly separates prose from poetry?
    Poetry is not verse according the authoritative source you brought, Princenton. I do not care the majority view, I am not dumb to appeal to majority. And you claimed the majority of authoritative sources supported your definition and ridiculously brought one that not only does not support your defintion as list several other authoritative sources that do not. Moving the goals posts to "I never denied the existence of other definitions" is not going to help you.

    What I’M doing is trying to keep language as clear as possible so mutual communication is fruitful. Miscommunication happens when you have two people running around with completely different intensions of the same word in their head, and many, many, many debates could be avoided if people were more concerned with connecting their intensions with extensional qualities. Lineation is an extensional quality that is easily recognized and understood. So it makes sense to me to have a word that refers to lineated literature (poetry) and a word that refers to non-lineated literature (prose), because the consequence not using those words to refer to those qualities is that you end up with a jumble of intensions that are applicable to both lineated and non-lineated literature, so that when someone says “poetry” or someone says “prose,” NOBODY WOULD HAVE A F’ING CLUE WHAT QUALITY SOMEONE WAS USING TO DEFINE THE WORD.
    Yes, so could you stop creating such confusion? Because the source you quoted, sorry THE SOURCE, clearly said poetry is not using verse, that there is linead prose, etc.

    Consider this: if we both share my definition of poetry, when I say “poetry” you know exactly what I mean and, what’s more important, what I DON’T mean. On the other hand, let’s ignore my definition and say I use the same word: what the hell do I mean now when I use the word and, what’s more, can you point to anything in the text that will distinguish it from any other kind of writing objectively?
    Me and Princenton guide do not share your definition of poetry. Since you unable to back up your use of the word with anything but "Majority of readers" , It will be fine if you stop stubbornly to cause confusion trying to impose your definition, ok?

    Being an encyclopedia of course they’re going to include other “definitions” of poetry, but they open their entire section on “poetry” with the passage I transcribed FOR A DAMN GOOD REASON. However, we can forget about what sources agree/disagree with me and just focus on the issue of whether or not it’s wise to attempt to redefine either term.
    So, you selected a passage ignoring all others to show an "Authority" that supported your claim while you were fully aware the same source would, in encyclopedical way, list every defintion? How is that supporting? How you didn't copy and pasted (for a damn reason: honestidy) the entire discussion that made clear, unlike you claim, they didnt exactly agree with your definition? So, you really considered I would had no access for the book, Morph?

    As opening the section, really? I wish to go to a teacher and say the reason i support a defintion in a 6 pages entry is because the first 8 lines. Anyways are you aware they do not start the same way in the 4th edition. It starts with Aristoteles (after saying about the history of the term as filled of uses), so now you will claim Aristoteles definition is right (he does not define according to verses). But more, what about really reading the entry?

    "A poem is an instance of verbal art, a text set in verse, bound speech…"

    A Poem. They define a Poem, not poetry as a text set in verse. They do say it was a traditional view to think poem = poetry, but they say it is a traditional view, not their view (which would justify why they kept the entry, this means this defintion is not "definitive" for them. Of course you could say they were just accounting the different schools, but this is not true. When they claim, Poetry is more than verses, that Poetry definition must account prose and verse, they do not mention anything about being a traditional (and outdated view), they just claim it in every other related entry. To them, Poetry is not the same as Poem or Verse. To them Prose Poems are poetry. They are not contraditory (considering all other quotations i posted), because they let clear, Prose is contraditory to verse, not to Poetry.

    So, yes, Princenton - it is an echo - do not define poetry as you do. It is not just to some people, It is their definition. They never defined Poetry as what set in verse at all. They agree with me. They do not support you at all. Which is why you mentioned them in first place. You are not going to argue with their authority will you?



    If you’re going to challenge definitions yet offer none of your own, essentially just leaving things with terms meaning anything, then what the hell’s the point?
    I am pretty sure no such academic would really defend a definition that is show to be flawed just because a new definition isn't produced.

    Do you really think I think that Eagleton’s definition is the ONLY definition out there?
    Nor i claimed it. I said it is limited and flawed good for student guides that will basically study traditional forms.

    Do you really think I hadn’t read that entire Princeton section (and others)?
    If you read, then why you claimed it supported your view while I quoted several portions of it where it pretty much reckognize Poetry as not the same as versing and that is compatible with Prose?

    Of course not; my point from the beginning was that Eagleton offered the best definition for all the reasons I’ve been giving. Now, if you think it’s NOT the best definition, it’s not enough just to point out that there are others, since that’s trivial; you have to point to others and argue why they’re better.
    No, to show the flaws of Eagleton definition I must just point to those flaws. It is rather ridiculous you keep claiming i just said there is others while i even posted a picture of a gilgamesh epic - Poetry - and showed Eagleton defintion cannot be used to show it is Poetry opposed to prose. I also mentioned - with my own words and of course, my new favorite THE Princeton guide - works of prose with metre and poetry without it. It is not because you stubbornly ignore it that make me "just point there are others."

    Similarly, if you’re going to keep using terms like “epic poetry” while not choosing a definition, then you should be prepared to be challenged on just what the hell you mean by calling something “epic poetry” when you haven’t bothered to define either term; otherwise you’re just begging the question.
    However my defintion of poetry (or what I suggest, since I did not really wrote one) is supported by an authoritative reference (eg, Princeton) does. Princeton may be THE reference book for such terms, did you knew it? Yours? Some dude writing a guide for grad students...

    Right, but there’s nothing unsatisfactory about Eagleton’s/my definition of poetry other than that people want to call other forms of literature poetry on a capricious whim.
    Do you mean like those Princeton guys? In a capricious whim they consider Prose Poems as poetry?

    No joke, I think we just misunderstood each other: I thought you were referring to oral literature that was written down as well. Still, there’s nothing oxymoronic about the term. If literature deals with written words, oral literature deals with spoken words; the same way verse can deal with metrical lines and free verse deals with un-metrical lines.
    Morph, Literature means "writen works", so Oral Literature is "oral writen works". Oxymoron. As some may say about free verse. So, as I said, several terms are created with contraditory terms and accepted with their new meanings.

    Or poetry and prose, two forms; and verse/free verse, two forms of poetry.
    Except it is Poems and Prose.

    I don’t know what you’re suggesting with the latter. The equivalent of “freezing” a “water” poem to make it prose would be like writing out Red Wheelbarrow in sentences without lines. It can’t exist both ways unless you write it out twice each way (like having two glasses of water).

    Sexual, sexy, it doesn’t really matter to the point I was making. If you can have “sexual” things outside of sex, those things are clearly not what defines sex; if you can have “poetic” things outside of poetry, those things are clearly not what defines poetry. All it means is that there are qualities that are associated with something but that can exist outside that something without defining what that something is. Yes, traits “define” things, but some traits are required for that definitions and some are not. The color white might be a trait of a rose, but it is not what defines it as a rose since roses can come in multiple colors.
    Except poetic or poetical means with the traits of poetry. (Being white is not a rose trait, it is a trait of a specific rose, btw. It is more like saying "rosic" is having petals, scent, or thorns - even with roses without thorns, so all that is poetic, have traits you will find in poetry). Hence "poetic prose" means prose like poetry and it would be an oxymoron according to your definition.

  6. #51
    King of Dreams MorpheusSandman's Avatar
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    JCam, I’m going to try to pare down this debate. It’s getting too close to an omnislash war. I’m going to try to group the different threads together as opposed to replying to them line-by-line. If I miss anything, just point it out in your next response.

    RE: Definitions/Poetry Changes

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    It is hilarious that you keep claiming a definition must be definitive and you post exactly proving definitions change… That the object described is not -as you with your failed analogy with Pluto - something that "stays the same" (Poetry clearly changes with cultures)…
    Definitions can and do change, of course. My whole point, and the one you keep ignoring, is that there is no reason to change the definition of poetry or prose from the ones I’ve given. That other people have called objects “poetry” that falls outside my definition does not invalidate my point, much as you’d like to think it does.

    But you’re still begging the question (speaking of logical fallacies); you continue to challenge my definition of poetry, yet you then turn around an insist that “poetry changes.” Well, pray tell, how can you say “poetry changes” if you don’t even know what poetry is? You’re just assuming—incorrectly—that there are these things that are poetry as opposed to there being these things that are linguistic works with different qualities that we call “prose” and “poetry,” and that what we call them is dependent upon our individual and social understanding of those terms and, what’s more, if you do as you’re doing—essentially saying there IS no agreed-upon definition of poetry—you lose every ground you have for claiming anything is or isn’t poetry! Yet, lo and behold, despite the fact you’re still using the term like it has some actual meaning! I think I should start pointing out every time you use the word “poetry” in the same paragraph you’re challenging that there is any definitive definition of poetry, because you’re sure using the word like it has some kind of definition that you understand and are comfortable using!

    RE: My Definition

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    I am pretty sure no such academic would really defend a definition that is show to be flawed just because a new definition isn't produced.
    You haven’t shown my definition to be flawed. All you’ve done is say “other people call things poetry that fall outside that definition.” What makes you think that’s showing a flaw in a definition as opposed to showing a flaw in what other people chose to call poetry?

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    A definition that cannot reach the real limits of the object like yours - it is more what the word means - fails. Yours failed.
    The problem is that if you choose to group too many unalike objects under the same label then it eventually becomes impossible to find any quality they all share that would justify using the same label. This is not MY failing, or a problem with MY definition, this is the failing of people who have foolishly chosen to group things with no similarities under the same label. I would have no problem calling non-verse literary works non-poetry to begin with. Or, if one insists on using the term, then attach some modifier to it that would give its own specialized meaning. So, say, “Gilgamesh poetry” would only exist to describe the kind of literary poetry we find in Gilgamesh. Otherwise, if you take something like Gilgamesh, The Bible, and then all of English verse and say “I feel we should give all of these works the same label; I’ll call that label “poetry,” yet you can’t find any quality that they all share, then that reveals a problem with your attempt at using one label for too many dissimilar works.

    See here: http://lesswrong.com/lw/o0/where_to_draw_the_boundary/

    Relevant abstract (and I’m going to change some words to make it more relevant to this discussion:
    Someone comes to you and says:

    Long have I pondered the meaning of the word "poetry", and at last I've found what seems to me a satisfactory definition: "Poetry is literature written in verse."

    Just because there's a word "poetry" doesn't mean that it has a meaning, floating out there in the void, which you can discover by finding the right definition.

    It feels that way, but it is not so.

    Wondering how to define a word means you're looking at the problem the wrong way—searching for the mysterious essence of what is, in fact, a communication signal.

    Now, there is a real challenge which a rationalist may legitimately attack, but the challenge is not to find a satisfactory definition of a word… The challenge is figuring out which things are similar to each other—which things are clustered together—and sometimes, which things have a common cause.

    If you define "eluctromugnetism" to include lightning, include compasses, exclude light, and include Mesmer's "animal magnetism" (what we now call hypnosis), then you will have some trouble asking "How does electromugnetism work?" You have lumped together things which do not belong together, and excluded others that would be needed to complete a set.

    We could say that electromugnetism is a wrong word, a boundary in thingspace that loops around and swerves through the clusters, a cut that fails to carve reality along its natural joints.

    Figuring where to cut reality in order to carve along the joints—this is the problem worthy of a rationalist. It is what people should be trying to do, when they set out in search of the floating essence of a word.

    What is "poetry"? But there is no essence of the word, floating in the void.

    Perhaps you come to me with a long list of the things that you call "poetry" and "not poetry":

    Gilgamesh: Poetry.
    A punch in the nose: Not poetry.
    Bible Psalms: Poetry.
    A flower: Not poetry.
    Paradise Lost: Poetry.
    A cross floating in urine: Not poetry.
    The Odyssey: Poetry.

    And you say to me: "It feels intuitive to me to draw this boundary, but I don't know why—can you find me an intension that matches this extension? Can you give me a simple description of this boundary?"



    But of course my definition of poetry is not the real point. The real point is that you could well dispute either the intension or the extension of my definition.

    (You could dispute) my intension, my attempt to draw a curve through the data points. You would say, "Your equation may roughly fit those points, but it is not the true generating distribution."

    Or you could dispute my extension by saying, "Some of these things do belong together—I can see what you're getting at… Here, the presumption is that there is indeed an underlying curve that generates this apparent list of similar and dissimilar things—that there is a rhyme and reason, even though you haven't said yet where it comes from—but I have unwittingly lost the rhythm and included some data points from a different generator.
    Now, I’ve had to change much of that article to make it be about “poetry” rather than “art,” but the point remains the same. If you come to me with a list of works you call “poetry” and say “I feel we should draw the boundary around these objects,” it’s quite possible you will find no similarities between them beside the fact that they’re literature (either written or oral). If you can find no common similarity amongst all of them, it makes no sense to use the same label to refer to all of them, because that label can’t refer to any common extension or intension. There can be no shared, communal meaning of the word.

    On the other hand, I’ve given you such a thing with my definition. My definition has clear, objective extension (lineated literature = verse = poetry) and intension. If we chose that definition we could communicate meaningfully. Otherwise what you’re left with is a word that groups too many dissimilar things together and one that cannot be used to communicate meaningfully. It can communicate VAGUELY, ie, someone says “poetry” and everyone gets a very vague idea of what they’re talking about—ie, they’ll know they mean literature, but, beyond that, they’ll only be guessing at what the person means by the term.

    RE: Princeton

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    Poetry is not verse according the authoritative source you brought, Princenton. I do not care the majority view, I am not dumb to appeal to majority… Me and Princenton guide do not share your definition of poetry
    Firstly, Appeal to majority is only fallacious for certain things. When you’re talking about definitions, you’re talking about meanings that are shared by the many people. Language is communal, so majority accounts for a great deal. It’s not an appeal to say “most people use X word to mean Y.”

    Secondly: When I said Princeton “supported my definition” I meant precisely that my definition was listed, and it was. I did not say that it exclusively supported my definition, that it did not list any others. It seems to me that you’re trying to turn my claim into something it never was. You’re making it out like I was saying “Princeton supports my definition excluding all others. That was never my claim. In fact, let’s go back and see exactly what was claimed:

    Me: “Nonetheless, my definitions are supported by almost every single textbook and dictionary and other authoritative reference I can find.”
    You: “That is an ontrageous and ridiculous lie. Several people do not consider "your definitions" true.”
    Me: “I never said everyone agreed with my definitions, what I said was that most every dictionary, textbook, and authoritative reference (eg, Princeton) does.”

    To say “my definition is supported is not to say my definition is supported at the exclusion of all others. The reason I only copied Princeton’s entry on my definition was to show that it did “support,” ie include, my definition, not to show that it said “yes, this is what poetry is and all other definitions are wrong.” Of course it (and few, if any other sources) wouldn’t say that. Perhaps the confusion happened over your bit about “my definition being true.” Definitions aren’t “true” or “false,” they’re simply either in usage or they’re not. My point was that: “My definition is in usage, supported, ie, listed, by most every authoritative reference, and here’s why we should use it.” So there’s two parts to my claim:

    1. Authoritative sources support, ie list, my definition.
    2. We should use my definitions for the reasons I’ve been giving.

    I was not trying to use those sources to argue 2. If I back up in the discussion even further, what prompted me to mention the authorities to begin with was that you were questioning my authority to use that definition at all. As if you were saying “you’re not an authority, you have no basis for choosing that definition to begin wtih.” My bringing up Princeton et al. was to say “no, other authorities mention that definition, so I’m not just making it up by my lonesome,” not “these authorities support me at the exclusion of all other definitions.”

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    But more, what about really reading the entry?

    "A poem is an instance of verbal poetry, a text set in verse, bound speech…"

    A Poem. They define a Poem, not poetry as a text set in verse.
    Errr, wrong: “p. has traditionally been distinguished from prose by virtue of being set in verse. What most readers understand as p. was, up until 1850, set in lines which were metrical, and even the several forms of vers libre and free verse produced since 1850 have been built largely on one or another concept of the line. Lineation is therefore central to the traditional conception of p. Prose is cast in sentences; p. is cast in sentences cast into lines.” By “p.” they mean “poetry,” since “poem” or “poems” wouldn’t work grammatically with their claims. It being “traditional” means relatively little to the issue of whether or not it’s a good definition.

    RE Other

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    Morph, Literature means "writen works", so Oral Literature is "oral writen works". Oxymoron. As some may say about free verse.
    Or it just reveals that there’s a different underlying similarity than what was formerly thought. EG, people thought verse meant “metrical literature” when what it really meant was “metrical lineated literature,” so “free verse” meaning “non-metrical lineated literature” may create an oxymoron with the former definition, but not the latter, since “free” refers to only one aspect of the definition. Similarly, while literature usually means “written works,” it could just as well mean “written works of language” and “oral literature” would be “spoken works of language. The reason we don’t add “of language” to the former is because it sounds redundant, but it’s not redundant when we consider the oral tradition. There’s only an apparent contradiction, not an actual one.

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    Except poetic or poetical means with the traits of poetry. (Being white is not a rose trait, it is a trait of a specific rose, btw. It is more like saying "rosic" is having petals, scent, or thorns - even with roses without thorns, so all that is poetic, have traits you will find in poetry). Hence "poetic prose" means prose like poetry and it would be an oxymoron according to your definition.
    No, this is quite wrong. Being white is a trait of many roses, just like, eg, metaphors are a trait of many poems, but not all poems. So someone might consider a beautiful metaphor to be “poetic” without it being something that is a trait of all poetry. If you’re talking about things being “poetic” like thorns are “rosic” (lol) then you’d be talking about something that’s a part of almost every poem, but, even then, wouldn’t be something that “defines” poetry (since there are a few sub-species of roses without thorns).
    Last edited by MorpheusSandman; 08-18-2013 at 08:32 PM.
    "As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being." --Carl Gustav Jung

    "To absent friends, lost loves, old gods, and the season of mists; and may each and every one of us always give the devil his due." --Neil Gaiman; The Sandman Vol. 4: Season of Mists

    "I'm on my way, from misery to happiness today. Uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh" --The Proclaimers

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    Quote Originally Posted by MorpheusSandman View Post
    Secondly: When I said Princeton “supported my definition” I meant precisely that my definition was listed, and it was. I did not say that it exclusively supported my definition, that it did not list any others. It seems to me that you’re trying to turn my claim into something it never was. You’re making it out like I was saying “Princeton supports my definition excluding all others. That was never my claim. In fact, let’s go back and see exactly what was claimed:
    Don't worry, I will not go line by line (since they are ignored anyways), not even mention that you used a text to defend your definition while the conclusion of the text that both extensional and intensional can be wrong(with you being the only one giving a definition so it certainly cannot apply to me) but really... Supporting means listing? Why I will bother to discuss the meaning of Poetry in face of such claim, even if THE Authority Princeton clearly contradicts your definition and support more or less what I said? The important here is that we must use words with precise meanings, the important is what Supporting means. But this does not interest me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    Don't worry, I will not go line by line (since they are ignored anyways), not even mention that you used a text to defend your definition while the conclusion of the text that both extensional and intensional can be wrong(with you being the only one giving a definition so it certainly cannot apply to me) but really... Supporting means listing? Why I will bother to discuss the meaning of Poetry in face of such claim, even if THE Authority Princeton clearly contradicts your definition and support more or less what I said? The important here is that we must use words with precise meanings, the important is what Supporting means. But this does not interest me.
    JCam, I was not trying to ignore you; it's simply that both of us were getting in the habit of repeating ourselves due to replying to each others' post line by line. If you feel I missed anything, simply point it out and I will reply to it. Further, I tried to explain what I was doing in "using a text to defend my definition." I think there was simply a misunderstanding there. Any encyclopedia or dictionary or (most any) textbook is going to list all possible definitions, they are not going to TELL a reader which definition to choose. So, yes, the fact that they LIST a definition means they SUPPORT the usage of that definition by essentially saying "this is how many use this word." Supporting one definition doesn't mean not supporting others; it's not an either/or situation. As I tried to explain, there were two issues (I thought) being discussed: the first being whether my definition was valid to begin with, meaning that it's "supported" by authorities; the second issue was whether or not my definition was the best one. I was using the "authorities" to argue for the former, and my arguments for the latter were completely different, and they're arguments I still don't feel like you've adequately addressed. Plus, I still don't know why you feel Princeton "contradicts" my definition when they open their entry by saying precisely what I've been claiming. Which version are you using as a reference? Because I'm using the 3rd Edition, and I looked up the page you referenced and couldn't find that entry.

    Yes, the importance is to use words with precise meaning, but, ironically, that's precisely what I'm saying the problem with other definitions of "poetry" are! They aren't precise, at all! Yes, the text I listed from lesswrong states that intensions or extensions can be "wrong," but you have not really argued how either my extensions or intensions are wrong, all you've done is state that other people have different intensions, ie, definitions subjective ideas of what poetry is. Saying that others have different intensions does not make either my intension or extension wrong, and, in fact, I've been trying to argue why my intensions and extensions are BETTER than theirs. In order to dispute that mine are better you have to do something besides list others. Listing others proves there are others, not that mine is "wrong" or "worse".
    "As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being." --Carl Gustav Jung

    "To absent friends, lost loves, old gods, and the season of mists; and may each and every one of us always give the devil his due." --Neil Gaiman; The Sandman Vol. 4: Season of Mists

    "I'm on my way, from misery to happiness today. Uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh" --The Proclaimers

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