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Topic: Literary theory

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In the News (Wed 20 Mar 19)

  Literary theory - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Literary theory is the theory (or the philosophy) of the interpretation of literature and literary criticism.
By the early 1990s, the popularity of "theory" as a subject of interest by itself was declining slightly (along with job openings for pure "theorists") even as the texts of literary theory were incorporated into the study of almost all literature.
As of 2004, the controversy over the use of theory in literary studies has all but died out, and discussions on the topic within literary and cultural studies tend now to be considerably milder and less acrimonious.
en.wikipedia.org /wiki/Literary_theory   (1709 words)

 Learn more about Literary theory in the online encyclopedia.   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-21)
Literary theory begins with classical Greek poetics and rhetoric and includes, since the 18th century, aesthetics and hermeneutics.
There are many popular schools of literary theory, which take different approaches to understanding texts (which can also mean non-fiction, film, and practically anything else that can be 'read' or interpreted).
The practice of literary theory became a profession in the 20th century, but it has historical roots that run as far back as ancient Greece (Longinus' On the Sublime is an often cited early example as is Aristotle's Poetics).
www.onlineencyclopedia.org /l/li/literary_theory.html   (520 words)

 literary theory: an evaluation   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-21)
Literary theory explores and attempts to evaluate the bases of criticism, but literary criticism itself is a practical activity carried out in a community of interests.
Large sections of current literary theory are preposterous, too wrong-headed to be worth untangling by the professional philosopher, an affront to commonsense and practical experience.
Theory at its most basic, those practical maxims that writers carry in their heads — maintain the viewpoint, shun cliché, employ the active tense — are applications of the aesthetic demands for pleasing shape and emotive appeal.
www.textetc.com /theory.html   (4904 words)

Literary Theory is part of a wide-spread movement in the culture which has affected a number of disciplines, occasioning similar disputes in some, a movement which has explored and elucidated the complexities of meaning, textuality and interpretation.
Theories and interpretive practices change with time, reflecting changing world-views and uses of literature, and each theoretical perspective tends to find fault with the one before — apparently a normal evolutionary pattern, an orderly changing of the paradigm guard, the child rebelling against the parent as a way [end page 90] of proclaiming its identity.
Contemporary critical theories may or may not be 'right,' given that there is a 'right,' but the issues that they address are genuine and considerable, as is their contribution to and place in contemporary thought, and the practice gives rise to serious and at times telling interpretations and revaluations.
www.brocku.ca /english/courses/2P70/contemporary_literary_theory.html   (6191 words)

 Literary Theory [Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy]
Literary theory is a description of the underlying principles, one might say the tools, by which we attempt to understand literature.
It is literary theory that formulates the relationship between author and work; literary theory develops the significance of race, class, and gender for literary study, both from the standpoint of the biography of the author and an analysis of their thematic presence within texts.
Literary theory and the formal practice of literary interpretation runs a parallel but less well known course with the history of philosophy and is evident in the historical record at least as far back as Plato.
www.utm.edu /research/iep/l/literary.htm   (4789 words)

 On the Teaching of Literary Theory
Otherwise the culture of humanism is merely being unseated by the culture of theory, and theory is misunderstood as the authoritative source of a New Wisdom.
To study literary theory for the purpose of extracting from it a useful interpretive strategy, then, is to turn aside from the adventure of questioning and trace one’s steps back to an earlier stage of unquestioned norms.
The advent of theory, the break that is now so often being deplored and that sets it aside from literary history and from literary criticism, occurs with the introduction of linguistic terminology in the metalanguage about literature.
www-english.tamu.edu /pers/fac/myers/teaching_theory.html   (4174 words)

 Foundations Study Guide: Literary Theory
Literary theory attempts to establish principles for interpreting and evaluating literary texts.
Literary theory is a ferociously contested field because it has crucial implications for every other field that is based on the interpretation of words.
Those "multiculturalists" who deny the validity of general and objective statements about the human condition are frequently inspired by literary theories that induce scepticism about people's ability to communicate their meanings across cultural and temporal barriers.
www.objectivistcenter.org /articles/foundations_literary-theory.asp   (2297 words)

 Literary Criticism
Thinking about "Literary Theory" is really thinking about one of the most amorphous things in the academy right now, "theory" itself.
In order to understand literary criticism as it is currently practiced, we have to understand the various underlying issues which only theory -- which is necessarily an abstraction -- can help us understand.
Culler's Literary Theory is a general text which is meant to introduce you to the issues that theoreticians grapple with every time they wake up.
department.monm.edu /english/mew/literary_theory.htm   (683 words)

 Amazon.ca: Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction: Books: Jonathan Culler   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-21)
Jonathan Culler, an extremely lucid commentator and much admired in the field of literary theory, offers discerning insights into such theories as the nature of language and meaning, and whether literature is a form of self-expression or a method of appeal to an audience.
Literary Theory also outlines the ideas behind a number of different schools: deconstruction, semiotics, postcolonial theory, and structuralism, among others.
Or that this commentary (like many other recent explanations of literary theory) did not pass by archetypal criticism, which may be reductive and out of fashion in the academy but for many younger readers offers an edifying and useful approach.
www.amazon.ca /Literary-Theory-Very-Short-Introduction/dp/019285383X   (1644 words)

 Theory in chaos | csmonitor.com   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-21)
Postmodern literary theory is now transforming itself so rapidly that Marxist, feminist, deconstructionist, and psychoanalytic critics (and others) are flocking back to the drawing board in droves as they search for new approaches to writing and teaching.
Indeed, some academics say that postmodern theory is on the way out altogether and that the heady ideas that once changed the way literature is taught and read will soon be as extinct as the dodo and the buggy whip.
Indeed, his 1983 book "Literary Theory: An Introduction" has long been a standard text in university classrooms and will no doubt continue to be, at least until Eagleton's recantation of all he once held holy becomes the new orthodoxy.
www.csmonitor.com /2004/0127/p11s01-legn.html   (1510 words)

 The Chronicle: 12/16/2005: The Fragmentation of Literary Theory
Theory today is a loose federation of states with permeable boundaries, no universally recognized constitution, and not much in the way of a lingua franca.
In that context, theory is the impenetrable postmodernist stuff that has given many a canon-loving student the heebie-jeebies since the French critic Roland Barthes declared authorship dead amid the intellectual and political tumult of 1968.
Leitch offers up one final definition of theory: "a historically new, postmodern mode of discourse that breaches longstanding borders, fusing literary criticism, philosophy, history, sociology, psychoanalysis, and politics." The result, he says, is a "cross-disciplinary pastiche" that falls under the increasingly wide banner of cultural studies.
chronicle.com /free/v52/i17/17a01201.htm   (4232 words)

 Literary theory
Contemporary Literary Theory: features some useful essays on differences among literary criticism, literary theory, and theory itself.
Criticism and literary theory 1890 to the present.
Literary criticism : an introduction to theory and practice.
www.library.jhu.edu /researchhelp/french/litheory.html   (307 words)

 Literary Resources -- Theory (Lynch)
Literary Theory and Criticism: A Bibliography (José Angel García Landa, Universidad de Zaragoza)
A worthy introduction to genre theory and narratology.
A journal of theory in Medieval and Renaissance studies.
andromeda.rutgers.edu /~jlynch/Lit/theory.html   (515 words)

Theory involves philosophy, politics, history, anthropology, and psychology; and invites us to become more curious about things and texts and more nuanced and deft in understanding our own interiors.
A major stumbling block to appreciating theory is the discomfort, as it were, of entering the party when you don't know the names of anyone.
Theory Text Precis: Choose a theoretical book (preferably by an author we are not reading), relevant to the issues that you are writing about in your essay.
www.fiu.edu /~harveyb/brucetheorynew.htm   (2756 words)

 Some Dictionaries of Literary Theory and Related Areas
An earlier version of this bibiliography was compiled for a seminar at Rutgers (Introduction to Literary Theory, Fall 1991 and 1992).
Probably the existence of the expression "literary criticism" led to the use of "critical theory" as a (more powerful?) synonym for "literary theory." ¶ The second word in the title means what it says.
Because stylistics draws on "whatever aspects of linguistics are felt to be relevant" and ditto for literary theory, this dictionary covers a broad range in its 484 pages.
www-rci.rutgers.edu /~edmunds/theory.html   (964 words)

 Literary Theory
It is, in a special sense, a lack of "wisdom" that underscores the fall of Oedipus and accounts for the disorder of the state.
Wisdom is not theory but judgment, not knowledge but acknowlegment of the ethics of obligation.
In this guerrilla strategy, performance is direct, local action against a specific evil rather than a reiterated rusing (against an agent of repression rather than a structure of power relations).
www.ruf.rice.edu /~wamorris/theory.html   (1689 words)

 Amazon.com: Literary Theory: An Introduction Second Edition: Books: Terry Eagleton   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-21)
Whether you agree with his flavor of literary theory or not, Terry Eagleton has done readers of literature an invaluable service by ripping down the thin veneers of all the "ism" schools of criticism.
Eagleton's point may be that literature and literary theory are illusions, but only as defined, delimited objects, not as fields worthy of study or of methodologies worth to study with.
"Literary Theory" was published in 1983 and so recent movements in theory are left out due to the failure of modern science to yet render humankind a time machine.
www.amazon.com /exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/081661251X?v=glance   (1867 words)

 Literary Theory
Especially useful are pages covering History, Literary Theory, Cultural Studies, Gender Studies, Literatures (other than English), and Philosophy.
A basic introductory guide to schools of literary theory including brief descriptions of each school followed by a useful list of print sources.
A portal for the community of literary scholars and researchers providing information on research, theory, recent publications, conferences and colloquia, and two on-line courses by Antoine Compagnon, Paris IV, on the author and the notion of genre.
www.fas.harvard.edu /~rll/resources/literary_theory.html   (655 words)

 Introduction to Modern Literary Theory
Disclaimer: When theories are explained briefly, a necessary reduction in their complexity and richness occurs.
A literary movement that started in the late 1920s and 1930s and originated in reaction to traditional criticism that new critics saw as largely concerned with matters extraneous to the text, e.g., with the biography or psychology of the author or the work's relationship to literary history.
In contrast, it views literary language as self-focused: its function is not to make extrinsic references, but to draw attention to its own "formal" features--that is, to interrelationships among the linguistic signs themselves.
www.kristisiegel.com /theory.htm   (6076 words)

 Lit Crit & Theory   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-21)
Freud's own relevance to "critical theory" was revived by Jacques Lacan's poststructuralist revision of psychoanalysis, in which the "self" (or ego)--trapped in the Symbolic of language--is forever fraught with a "gap" or incompleteness that is always striving--and failing--to (re-)achieve a wholeness with the original (and "Imaginary") state of unity perceived by the infant.
A label sometimes applied to the theories of Foucault (and others), which hold that the so-called (and high-falootin') "history of ideas" entails an origin in, and evolution of, socio-historical discourses and disciplines of knowledge and power.
Queer theory, like feminism, is often quite constructivist, and the battle is waged in the sphere of discourse; witness, then, these scholars' move to resignify the traditionally negative label "queer" as a positive term, and Judith BUTLER's (and others', of course) argument that gender identity itself is ultimately discursive.
www.usd.edu /~tgannon/crit.html   (4900 words)

 ENGL 4F70 Home Page
The 'death of the author' as an instance of theory
Literary and Critical Theory at Brown George Landow
Glossary of Literary Theory by Greig E. Henderson and Christopher Brown
www.brocku.ca /english/courses/4F70/index.html   (375 words)

 New York University | Bobst Library: Research Assistance -- rg18.html
Written to be used as a textbook, this is a superb introduction to literary theory.
Essays on the fundamentals and background of literary theory, including "What is Literary Theory" in which, among other things, the distinction between literary criticism and literary theory is made.
This is a useful volume, published by perhaps the epicenter of literary theory, and so should not be ignored.
library.nyu.edu /research/rg18.html   (1024 words)

 Eagleton: Literary Theory, 2nd Edition
The second edition contains a major new survey chapter that addresses developments since the book's original publication in 1983, including feminist theory, postmodernism, poststructuralism-what is broadly referred to as cultural theory.
Noted for its clear, engaging style and unpretentious treatment, Literary Theory has become the introduction of choice for anyone interested in learning about the world of contemporary literary thought.
"Literary Theory has the kind of racy readability that one associates more often with English critics who have set their faces resolutely against theory.
www.upress.umn.edu /Books/E/eagleton_literary2E.html   (319 words)

 Department of English
The Critical Theory Institute provides a locus for the confuct and support of collaborative, interdisciplinary research focused on the theoretical underpinnings of such fields as history, literature, and new social forces.
Cultural Studies and Critical Theory Cultural studies draws from the fields of anthropology, sociology, gender studies, feminism, literary criticism, history and psychoanalysis in order to discuss contemporary texts and cultural practices.
Based on the courses Hypertext and Literary Theory and Cyberspace, Virtual Reality, and Critical Theory at Brown University this is a collection of more than 7,000 interlinked materials.
www.wooster.edu /english/literary_theory.html   (560 words)

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