Description : This work is the first history and evaluation of contemporary American critical theory within its European philosophical contexts. In the first part, Frank Lentricchia analyzes the impact on our critical thought of Frye, Stevens, Kermode, Sartre, Poulet, Heidegger, Sussure, Barthes, Lévi-Strauss, Derrida, and Foucault, among other, less central figures. In a second part, Lentricchia turns to four exemplary theorists on the American scene—Murray Krieger, E. D. Hirsch, Jr., Paul de Man, and Harold Bloom—and an analysis of their careers within the lineage established in part one. Lentricchia's critical intention is in evidence in his sustained attack on the more or less hidden formalist premises inherited from the New Critical fathers. Even in the name of historical consciousness, he contends, contemporary theorists have often cut literature off from social and temporal processes. By so doing he believes that they have deprived literature of its relevant values and turned the teaching of both literature and theory into a rarefied activity. All along the way, with the help of such diverse thinkers as Saussure, Barthes, Foucault, Derrida, and Bloom, Lentricchia indicates a strategy by which future critical theorists may resist the mandarin attitudes of their fathers.
Description : This volume covers a variety of authors and topics related to the New Criticism school of the 1920s–1950s in America. Contributors trace the history of the New Criticism as a movement, consider theoretical and practical aspects of various proponents, and assess the record of subsequent engagement with its tenets. The volume will prove valuable for its renewed concentration not only on the New Critics themselves, but also on the way they and their work have been contextualized, criticized, and valorized by theorists and educators during and after their period of greatest influence, both in the United States and abroad.
Description : From the New Criticism to Deconstruction traces the transitions in American critical theory and practice from the 1950s to the 1980s. It focuses on the influence of French structuralism and post-structuralism on American deconstruction within a wide-ranging context that includes literary criticism, philosophy, psychology, technology, and politics.
Description : American Literary Criticism Since the 1930s fully updates Vincent B. Leitch’s classic book, American Literary Criticism from the 30s to the 80s following the development of the American academy right up to the present day. Updated throughout and with a brand new chapter, this second edition: provides a critical history of American literary theory and practice, discussing the impact of major schools and movements examines the social and cultural background to literary research, considering the role of key theories and practices provides profiles of major figures and influential texts, outlining the connections among theorists presents a new chapter on developments since the 1980s, including discussions of feminist, queer, postcolonial and ethnic criticism. Comprehensive and engaging, this book offers a crucial overview of the development of literary studies in American universities, and a springboard to further research for all those interested in the development and study of Literature.
Description : An anthology of exemplary readings by some of the twentieth century’s foremost literary critics, Close Reading presents a wide range of responses to the question at the heart of literary criticism: how best to read a text to understand its meaning. The lively introduction and the selected essays provide an overview of close reading from New Criticism through poststructuralism, including works of feminist criticism, postcolonial theory, queer theory, new historicism, and more. From a 1938 essay by John Crowe Ransom through the work of contemporary scholars, Close Reading highlights the interplay between critics—the ways they respond to and are influenced by others’ works. To facilitate comparisons of methodology, the collection includes discussions of the same primary texts by scholars using different critical approaches. The essays focus on Hamlet, “Lycidas,” “The Rape of the Lock,” Ulysses, Invisible Man, Beloved, Jane Austen, John Keats, and Wallace Stevens and reveal not only what the contributors are reading, but also how they are reading. Frank Lentricchia and Andrew DuBois’s collection is an essential tool for teaching the history and practice of close reading. Contributors. Houston A. Baker Jr., Roland Barthes, Homi Bhabha, R. P. Blackmur, Cleanth Brooks, Kenneth Burke, Paul de Man, Andrew DuBois, Stanley Fish, Catherine Gallagher, Sandra Gilbert, Stephen Greenblatt, Susan Gubar, Fredric Jameson, Murray Krieger, Frank Lentricchia, Franco Moretti, John Crowe Ransom, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, Helen Vendler
Description : Harold Bloom's The Anxiety of Influence has cast its own long shadow of influence since it was first published in 1973. Through an insightful study of Romantic poets, Bloom puts forth his central vision of the relations between tradition and the individual artist. Although Bloom was never the leader of any critical "camp," his argument that all literary texts are a response to those that precede them had an enormous impact on the practice of deconstruction and poststructuralist literary theory in this country. The book remains a central work of criticism for all students of literature and has sold over 17,000 copies in paperback since 1984. Written in a moving personal style, anchored by concrete examples, and memorably quotable, Bloom's book maintains that the anxiety of influence cannot be evaded--neither by poets nor by responsible readers and critics. This second edition contains a new Introduction, which explains the genesis of Bloom's thinking and the subsequent influence of the book on literary criticism of the past twenty years.criticism of the past twenty years. Here, Bloom asserts that the anxiety of influence comes out of a complex act of strong misreading, a creative interpretation he calls "poetic misprision." The influence-anxiety does not so much concern the forerunner but rather is an anxiety achieved in and by the story, novel, play, poem, or essay. In other words, without Keats's reading of Shakespeare, Milton, and Wordsworth, we could not have Keats's odes and sonnets and his two Hyperions. Given the enormous attention generated by Bloom's controversial The Western Cannon, this new edition is certain to find a readymade audience among the new generation of scholars, students, and layreaders interested in the Bloom cannon.
Description : Unsurpassed as a text for upper-division and beginning graduate students, Raman Selden's classic text is the liveliest, most readable and most reliable guide to contemporary literary theory. Includes applications of theory, cross-referenced to Selden's companion volume, Practicing Theory and Reading Literature.