Critics maintain that the fiction of Herman Melville (1819–1891) has limitations, such as its lack of inventive plots after Moby-Dick (1851) and its occasionally inscrutable style. A more serious, yet problematic, charge is that Melville is a deficient writer because he is not a practitioner of the “art of fiction,” as critics have conceived of this art since the late nineteenth- century essays and novels of Henry James. Indeed, most twentieth-century commentators regard Melville not as a novelist but as a writer of romance, since they believe that Melville’s fiction lacks the continuity that James viewed as essential to a novel: the continuity between what characters feel or think and what they do, and the continuity between characters’ fates and their pasts or original social classes. Critics argue that only Pierre (1852), because of its subject and its characters, is close to being a novel in the Jamesian sense.
However, although Melville is not a Jamesian novelist, he is not therefore a deficient writer. A more reasonable position is that Melville is a different kind of writer, who held, and should be judged by, presuppositions about fiction that are quite different from James’s. It is true that Melville wrote “romances”; however, these are not the escapist fictions this word often implies, but fictions that range freely among very unusual or intense human experiences. Melville portrayed such experiences because he believed these best enabled him to explore moral questions, an exploration he assumed was the ultimate purpose of fiction. He was content to sacrifice continuity or even credibility as long as he could establish a significant moral situation. Thus Melville’s romances do not give the reader a full understanding of the complete feelings and thoughts that motivate actions and events that shape fate. Rather, the romances leave unexplained the sequence of events and either simplify or obscure motives. Again, such simplifications and obscurities exist in order to give prominence to the depiction of sharply delineated moral values, values derived from a character’s purely personal sense of honor, rather than, as in a Jamesian novel, from the conventions of society.
Which of the following can most logically be inferred about the author’s estimation of the romantic and novelistic traditions of fiction?
这道题主要定位在整个的第二段中，在第二段中作者叙述了浪漫小说的特点和作用，并对浪漫小说给予了肯定。在A more reasonable position is that Melville is a different kind of writer,这句话中，作者也提及了HM作为浪漫小说的代表，应该被看作是另一个类别的作家。言下之意是浪漫小说也应该被看成另一种类别，跟别的小说是一样的定位。所以选A
人们传统意义上认为的小说是Jamesian那种的，但是大家忽略了还有一种小说类型是romantic型的。作者本文的目的就是想说明romantic型小说的价值，让大家注意道这种类型的小说。 The romantic tradition should be considered at least as valuable as the novelistic tradition in the examination of human experience.
我觉得这题没有准确的定位，是靠对于整个文段的理解。这题第一段说很多critcs认为HM的小说不好，他不是个正统的作家，第一段的后面在解释为什么critics会这样认为，因为他们把HJ的小说和他的行文方式当成标准，而HM明显不符合HJ的标准。第二段作者就在为HM辩护，说其实不是HM不好，只是HM是另一种作者，写小说是另一种方式。整篇文章并没有判断是HJ好还是HM好，所以所有判断谁好谁坏的选项都应该被排除，排除B C D项明显不对，critics明显不赞同romantic 所以不能和novelistic同样取悦critics E项 文章没提到贡献 更没提到时间问题 综合判断答案选A
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