Poetics is the consideration of literary theory and discourse. It gives special attention to the theory of poetry, but poetics broadly considers all artistic use of language.
Aristotle’s Poetics is universally acknowledged in the Western critical tradition. In this treatise, Aristotle examines the first principles of literary theory. He identifies genres and basic elements, and his analysis of tragedy constitutes the core of the work.
The title, Poetics and Faith, suggests that the lens of religious thought will be use to consider the theory and work of literary art. T.S. Eliot writes that without poetry “people everywhere would cease to be able to express, and consequently be able to feel, the emotions of civilized beings.” He makes a direct link between the sensibility promoted by poetry and development of religious sensibility. This religious sensibility is related to religious belief yet distinct. It considers the ability (or inability) to feel toward God and man; the ability (inability) to express in a meaningful way religious feeling. To lose our ability to feel and express in general, but specifically to do so in our spiritual lives is a form of death.