Coleridge on Imagination: Smack Dab in the Imagination by Dia Calhoun

This chart is a great entry to Coleridge's ideas on primary and secondary imagination, and fancy as he laid out in his book Biographia Literaria. It's useful for a writer to think about which of these  capacities comes most naturally. Which do you need to cultivate to make your writing stronger?

"The Imagination then I consider either as primary, or secondary. The primary Imagination I hold to be the living Power and prime Agent of all human Perception, and as a repetition in the finite mind of the eternal act of creation in the infinite I Am. The secondary I consider as an echo of the former, co-existing with the conscious will, yet still as identical with the primary in the kind of its agency, and differing only in degree, and in the mode of its operation. It dissolves, diffuses, dissipates, in order to re-create; or where this process is rendered impossible, yet still at all events it struggles to idealize and to unify. It is essentially vital, even as all objects (as objects) are essentially fixed and dead."



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