Western Literature Works - Harold Bloom

Bloom has a long list, and in his book there are chapters to talk about key authors.The source of the list comes from this online site, which I refer to from time to time. http://www.interleaves.org/~rteeter/grtbloom.html. Instead of replicating most of the list, I would use the same bucketing as Bloom, only list out authors / texts whose category from which Bloom hasn't selected authors as central to the western canon (i.e. not covered in his chapters).


A. The Theocratic Age

The Ancient Near East

  • Gilgamesh
  • Egyptian Book of the Dead
  • Holy Bible (King James Version)
  • The Apocrypha
  • Sayings of the Fathers (Pirke Aboth)


Greco / Roman section skipped - already studied through the Leob catalogue.


The Middle Ages: Latin, Arabic, and the Vernacular Before Dante

  • Saint Augustine
  • The Poetic Edda
  • Snorri Sturluson: The Prose Edda
  • The Nibelungen Lied
  • Wolfram von Eschenbach: Parzival
  • Chrétien de Troyes: Yvain: The Knight of the Lion
  • Beowulf
  • The Poem of the Cid
  • Christine de Pisan: The Book of the City of Ladies
  • Diego de San Pedro: Prison of Love


B. The Aristocratic Age

Italy: Dante



  • Luis de Camoëns: The Lusiads
  • Antònio Ferreira: Poetry


Spain: Cervantes


England and Scotland: Chaucer, Shakespeare, Milton, Samuel Johnson


France: Montaigne, Moliere


Germany: Goethe


C. The Democratic Age


  • Ugo Foscolo: On Sepulchres, Last Letters of Jacopo Ortis, Odes, and The Graces
  • Alessandro Manzoni: The Betrothed, On the Historical Novel
  • Giacomo Leopardi: Essays and Dialogues, Poems, The Moral Essays
  • Giuseppe Gioacchino Belli: Roman Sonnets
  • Giosué Carducci: Hymn to Satan, Barbarian Odes, Rhymes and Rhythms
  • Giovanni Verga:  Little Novels of Sicily, Mastro-Don Gesualdo, The House by the Medlar Tree, The She-Wolf and Other Stories


Spain and Portugal

  • Gustavo Adolpho Bécquer: Poems
  • Benito Pérez Galdós: Fortunata and Jacinta
  • Leopoldo Alas (Clarín):  La Regenta
  • José Maria de Eça de Queirós: The Maias



  • Benjamin Constant: Adolphe, The Red Notebook
  • François-Auguste-René de Chateaubriand:  Attala, René, The Genius of Christianity
  • Alphonse de Lamartine: Meditations
  • Alfred de Vigny: Chatterton, Poems
  • Victor Hugo: The Distance, the Shadows: Selected Poems, Les Misérables, Notre-Dame of Paris, William Shakespeare, The Toilers of the Sea, The End of Satan, God
  • Alfred de Musset: Poems, Lorenzaccio
  • Gérard de Nerval: The Chimeras, Sylvie, Aurelia
  • Théophile Gautier: Mademoiselle de Maupin, Enamels and Cameos
  • Honoré de Balzac: The Girl with the Golden Eyes, Louis Lambert, The Wild Ass's Skin, Old Goriot, Cousin Bette, A Harlot High and Low, Eugénie Grandet, Ursule Mirouet
  • Stendhal: On Love, The Red and the Black, The Charterhouse of Parma
  • Gustave Flaubert: Madame Bovary, Sentimental Education, Salammbô, A Simple Soul
  • George Sand: The Haunted Pool
  • Charles Baudelaire:  Flowers of Evil, Paris Spleen
  • Stéphane Mallarmé:  Selected Poetry and Prose
  • Paul Verlaine:  Selected Poems
  • Arthur Rimbaud:  Complete Works
  • Tristan Corbière:  Les Armours Jaunes
  • Jules Laforgue:  Selected Writings
  • Guy de Maupassant:  Selected Short Stories
  • Émile Zola:  Germinal, L'Assommoir, Nana


Scandinavia: Ibsen


Great Britain: William Wordsworth, Austen, Dickens, George Eliot 



  • Novalis (Friedrich von Hardenburg): Hymns to the Night, Aphorisms
  • Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm: Fairy Tales
  • Eduard Mörike: Selected Poems, Mozart on His Way to Prague
  • Theodor Storm: Immensee, Poems
  • Gottfried Keller: Green Henry, Tales
  • E. T. A. Hoffmann: The Devil's Elixir, Tales
  • Jeremias Gotthelf: The Black Spider
  • Adalbert Stifter: Indian Summer, Tales
  • Friedrich Schlegel: Criticism and Aphorisms
  • Georg Büchner: Danton's Death, Woyzeck
  • Heinrich Heine: Complete Poems
  • Richard Wagner: The Ring of the Nibelung
  • Friedrich Nietzsche: The Birth of Tragedy, Beyond Good and Evil, On the Genealogy of Morals, The Will to Power
  • Theodor Fontane: Effi Briest
  • Stefan George: Selected Poems


Russia: Tolstoy


The United States: Whitman, Dickinson 


From this summary, it is pretty clear that Bloom is extremely western Europe focused, and probably overweight literature in the English language.

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