Scholars Discover the Commonwealth Literatures


The increased attention to the literature of the Commonwealth countries owes something to the search of literary scholars for subjects less encrusted with critical and historical writings than those furnished by the earlier periods of English literature. In recent decades nineteenth-century English literature, American literature, and twentieth-century literature in both countries have invited research and criticism, but new areas are welcome. The world continues to grow smaller, and the battle of ideas, the battle for the minds of men, is more desperate than ever. Thus books belong not to one country but to the world, whether it is soon to be one world or not. And all the more surely is the literature written in English the possession of all those who read that language. The exchange of persons—and with them of course the exchange of ideas—among American universities and Commonwealth universities around the world is one of the prominent facts of present-day academic life.

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Published 1 June 1964 in Volume 1 No. 3. Subjects: Australian literature - Overseas responses, Commonwealth literature & writers.

Cite as: Turner, Arlin. ‘Scholars Discover the Commonwealth Literatures.’ Australian Literary Studies, vol. 1, no. 3, 1964, doi: 10.20314/als.0ebcadc54d.