The Philosophy of Style

  • 作   者:

    Herbert Spencer

  • 出版社:

    Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press

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赫伯特·斯宾塞(Herbert Spencer,1820年4月27日–1903年12月8日) ,英国哲学家。他为人所共知的就是“社会达尔文主义之父”,他提出的一套学说把进化理论适者生存应用在社会学上尤其是教育及阶级斗争。但是,他的著作对很多课题都有贡献,包括规范、形而上学、宗教、政治、修辞、生物和心理学等等。在斯宾塞的时代存在许多著名哲学家和科学家,譬如约翰·斯图亚特·穆勒(John Stewart Mill)、汤马士·亨利·赫胥黎和查尔斯·达尔文都是当代知名的人物。在理论上的阐述英国哲学家,进化论的先驱,先于达尔文。据说斯宾塞比较厌恶柏拉图学说,他那句“即使三流小说家,也会比他(指柏拉图)强”,无疑是对柏拉图的侮辱。这大概是因为斯宾塞是一个怀疑论者,而柏却是一个攻击怀疑论的辨证论者。另外,杰克·伦敦对斯宾塞不无推崇,在其代表作《马丁·伊登》中,杰克·伦敦对斯宾塞不无赞美。

Herbert Spencer (27 April 1820 – 8 December 1903) was an English philosopher, biologist, anthropologist, sociologist, and prominent classical liberal political theorist of the Victorian era.


Commenting on the seeming incongruity between his father’s argumentative powers and his ignorance of formal logic, Tristram Shandy says:—“It was a matter of just wonder with my worthy tutor, and two or three fellows of that learned society, that a man who knew not so much as the names of his tools, should be able to work after that fashion with them.” Sterne’s intended implication that a knowledge of the principles of reasoning neither makes, nor is essential to, a good reasoner, is doubtless true. Thus, too, is it with grammar. As Dr. Latham, condemning the usual school-drill in Lindley Murray, rightly remarks: “Gross vulgarity is a fault to be prevented; but the proper prevention is to be got from habit—not rules.” Similarly, there can be little question that good composition is far less dependent upon acquaintance with its laws, than upon practice and natural aptitude. A clear head, a quick imagination, and a sensitive ear, will go far towards making all rhetorical precepts needless. He who daily hears and reads well-framed sentences, will naturally more or less tend to use similar ones. And where there exists any mental idiosyncrasy—where there is a deficient verbal memory, or an inadequate sense of logical dependence, or but little perception of order, or a lack of constructive ingenuity; no amount of instruction will remedy the defect. Nevertheless, some practical result may be expected from a familiarity with the principles of style. The endeavour to conform to laws may tell, though slowly. And if in no other way, yet, as facilitating revision, a knowledge of the thing to be achieved—a clear idea of what constitutes a beauty, and what a blemish—cannot fail to be of service.

  • 第一章 语言有力的原因在于脑力的节省

  • 第二章 语言有力的原因在于节省大脑感知力

  • Part I Causes of Force in Language Which Depend Upon Economy of the Mental Energies

  • Part II Causes of Force in Language Which Depend Upon Economy of the Mental Sensibilities