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How to Interpret Literature Critical Theory for Literary and Cultural Studies

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  • Edition: 4th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2019-08-30
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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Offering a refreshing combination of accessibility and intellectual rigor, How to Interpret Literature: Critical Theory for Literary and Cultural Studies, Fourth Edition, presents an up-to-date, concise, and wide-ranging historicist survey of contemporary thinking in critical theory. The only book of its kind that thoroughly merges literary studies with cultural studies, this text provides a critical look at the major movements in literary studies from the 1930s to the present. It is the only up-to-date survey of literary theory that devotes extensive treatment to queer studies, postcolonial and race studies, environmental criticism, and disability studies. How to Interpret Literature is ideal as a stand-alone text or in conjunction with an anthology of primary readings, like Robert Dale Parker's Critical Theory: A Reader for Literary and Cultural Studies.

Author Biography

Robert Dale Parker is Frank Hodgins Professor of English at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1: Introduction

Chapter 2: New Criticism
Before New Criticism
How to Interpret: Key Concepts for New Critical Interpretation
Historicizing the New Criticism: Rethinking Literary Unity
The Intentional Fallacy and the Affective Fallacy
How to Interpret: A New Critical Example
The Influence of New Criticism
Further Reading

Chapter 3: Structuralism
Key Concepts in Structuralism
How to Interpret: Structuralism in Cultural and Literary Studies
The Death of the Author
How to Interpret: The Detective Novel
Structuralism, Formalism, and Literary History
The Structuralist Study of Narrative: Narratology
How to Interpret: Focalization and Free Indirect Discourse
Narrative Syntax, and Metaphor and Metonymy
Further Reading

Chapter 4: Deconstruction
Key Concepts in Deconstruction
How to Interpret: A Deconstructionist Example
Writing, Speech, and Différance
Deconstruction beyond Derrida
Deconstruction, Essentialism, and Identity
How to Interpret: Further Deconstructionist Examples
Further Reading

Chapter 5: Psychoanalysis
Clinical Psychoanalysis
Key Concepts in Psychoanalysis: The Psychoanalytic Understanding of the Mind
Sigmund Freud
How to Interpret: Models of Psychoanalytic Interpretation
From the Interpretation of Dreams to the Interpretation of Literature
How to Interpret: Further Psychoanalytic Examples
Jacques Lacan
How to Interpret: A Lacanian Example
Further Reading

Chapter 6: Feminism
What Is Feminism?
Early Feminist Criticism and Contemporary Feminist Criticism
Sex and Gender
How to Interpret: Feminist Examples
Feminism and Visual Pleasure
Intersectionality and the Interdisciplinary Ethos of Contemporary Feminism
Further Reading

Chapter 7: Queer Studies
Key Concepts in Queer Studies
How to Interpret: A Queer Studies Example
Queer Studies and History
Outing: Writers, Characters, and the Literary Closet
How to Interpret: Outing the Closet
Homosociality and Homosexual Panic
Heteronormativity, the Anti-Social Turn, and Queer Time
Queer of Color Critique
How to Interpret: Another Queer Studies Example
Questions That Queer Studies Critics Ask
Further Reading

Chapter 8: Marxism
Key Concepts in Marxism
Lukács, Gramsci, and Marxist Interpretations of Culture
Contemporary Marxism, Ideology, and Agency
How to Interpret: An Example from Popular Culture
Variations in Marxist Criticism
How to Interpret: Further Marxist Examples
Further Reading

Chapter 9: Historicism and Cultural Studies
New Historicism
How to Interpret: Historicist Examples
Michel Foucault
Cultural Studies
How to Interpret: A Cultural Studies Example
Cultural Studies, Historicism, and Literature
Further Reading

Chapter 10: Postcolonial and Race Studies
From Orientalism to Deconstruction: Edward Said, Homi Bhabha, and Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak
How to Interpret: A Postcolonial Studies Example
Race Studies
How to Interpret: Postcolonial and Race Studies Examples
Postcolonial and Race Studies and Literary Studies
Further Reading

Chapter 11: Reader Response
Ideal, Implied, and Actual Readers
Structuralist Models of Reading and Communication
Aesthetic Judgment, Interpretive Communities, and Resisting Readers
Reception Theory and Reception History
Paranoid, Suspicious, and Symptomatic Reading versus Surface Reading
Readers and the New Technologies
Further Reading

Chapter 12: Recent and Emerging Developments: Environmental Criticism and Disability Studies
Environmental Criticism
Disability Studies
A Future for Critical Theory
Further Reading

Terms for Poetic Form
Works Cited
Photographic Credits

Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?

The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.

The Used, Rental and eBook copies of this book are not guaranteed to include any supplemental materials. Typically, only the book itself is included. This is true even if the title states it includes any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.

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