Caroline Winter is a PhD Candidate in the English Department at the University of Victoria, Canada. Her field of research is British Romanticism, and her dissertation examines Romantic Gothic literature in its economic contexts.
In T. S. Eliot’s famous model for artists and their creations delineated in “Tradition and the Individual Talent,” all the works of art throughout history exist as monuments that “form an ideal order among themselves.” Although this arrangement can be “altered” slightly, Eliot stresses the “conformity between the old and the new” (“Tradition,” 15). Eliot’s conservative canon preserves an existing binary order—authors are major or minor; works are canonical or noncanonical—and leaves little room for major upheaval or disruption. However, most modernist authors saw their projects as less static and more expansive than Eliot’s metaphor would indicate.