Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data. Cuddon, J. A. (John Anthony ), A dictionary of literary terms and literary theory / J.A. Cuddon. With new entries and sensitive edits, this fifth edition places J.A. Cuddon's indispensable dictionary firmly in the 21st Century. Written in a clear. also use the middle (mesostich) or find (telestich) lener of each line. In prose the first letter The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Literary Terms.
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A dictionary of literary terms and literary theory / J.A. Cuddon. – 5th ed. p. cm. Includes bibliographical references and index. ISBN (cloth. 'An indispensable work of reference' Times Literary Supplement The Penguin Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory is firmly. The Penguin Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory (Penguin Dictionary). Home · The A Dictionary of Literary And Thematic Terms. Read more.
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Chris Baldick Next Edition: Latest Edition 4 ed. Showing Rating details. Sort order. Apr 08, Jen Kautt is currently reading it.
Yeah, I'm reading it for my own personal pleasure. Gotta problem with that? View 2 comments. Aug 04, Sadia Mansoor rated it really liked it Shelves: Attention to all Literature Majors! This dictionary is a great help for every literary term you are looking for! Check it out https: Dec 17, Mikimbizii rated it it was amazing Shelves: An amazing behemoth of a book It is more like journeying through a complex, exotic map of a secret island than reading.
I came across some of the loveliest terms that tickled and rolled on my tongue like the sweetest honey.. Although a very academic work, I read it like a poem, explored it like silent children examining delightfully intriguing puzzle-boxes - leisurely lingering over descriptions, tracing terms of similar meaning and meanderi An amazing behemoth of a book Although a very academic work, I read it like a poem, explored it like silent children examining delightfully intriguing puzzle-boxes - leisurely lingering over descriptions, tracing terms of similar meaning and meandering deeper and deeper into its bulky depths.
It is also a record of the rich history of literature, the different moments, styles, schools and theories. A must have for an academic and an great choice for those who love literature and poetry in a mad, curious and dionysian-like way. Feb 27, Alok Mishra rated it it was amazing. A very useful book for the students of English literature. You will learn a lot and all the learning elementary level, mostly accumulated at one place - you can browse, find and learn.
I will recommend this for the students of graduation, post graduation and senior levels. A very useful book that should be on every serious readers shelf.
View 1 comment. Jun 27, Kristin rated it it was amazing. A great resource. I love the way the author has these partialities that he just can't keep out of his writing, no matter how hard to tries. How Poe having a lot of influence on later horror novelists was to their detriment, for example. Oct 04, Lady Jane rated it it was amazing. A delectable, enjoyable, and very necessary buffet of knowledge for the English major! Jul 15, Marie rated it really liked it Shelves: Excellent reference book!
It's one of the best references in literary criticism and literary theories. I think the revisions made by M. They actually created an updated and more accessible version. Aug 30, Helen rated it liked it.
Although it is regularly released in new editions to include new entries and opinions, I still find by the time its published it's already quite out-of-date. The other schools of literary theory, to varying degrees, embrace a postmodern view of language and reality that calls into serious question the objective referent of literary studies.
The following categories are certainly not exhaustive, nor are they mutually exclusive, but they represent the major trends in literary theory of this century. Traditional Literary Criticism Academic literary criticism prior to the rise of "New Criticism" in the United States tended to practice traditional literary history: tracking influence, establishing the canon of major writers in the literary periods, and clarifying historical context and allusions within the text.
Literary biography was and still is an important interpretive method in and out of the academy; versions of moral criticism, not unlike the Leavis School in Britain, and aesthetic e.
Perhaps the key unifying feature of traditional literary criticism was the consensus within the academy as to the both the literary canon that is, the books all educated persons should read and the aims and purposes of literature. What literature was, and why we read literature, and what we read, were questions that subsequent movements in literary theory were to raise.
Formalism and New Criticism "Formalism" is, as the name implies, an interpretive approach that emphasizes literary form and the study of literary devices within the text. The work of the Formalists had a general impact on later developments in "Structuralism" and other theories of narrative.
The Formalists placed great importance on the literariness of texts, those qualities that distinguished the literary from other kinds of writing. Neither author nor context was essential for the Formalists; it was the narrative that spoke, the "hero-function," for example, that had meaning. Form was the content. A plot device or narrative strategy was examined for how it functioned and compared to how it had functioned in other literary works.
The Formalist adage that the purpose of literature was "to make the stones stonier" nicely expresses their notion of literariness. Literary language, partly by calling attention to itself as language, estranged the reader from the familiar and made fresh the experience of daily life.
The "New Criticism," so designated as to indicate a break with traditional methods, was a product of the American university in the s and 40s. Eliot, though not explicitly associated with the movement, expressed a similar critical-aesthetic philosophy in his essays on John Donne and the metaphysical poets, writers who Eliot believed experienced a complete integration of thought and feeling.
Wimsatt placed a similar focus on the metaphysical poets and poetry in general, a genre well suited to New Critical practice. Perhaps the enduring legacy of "New Criticism" can be found in the college classroom, in which the verbal texture of the poem on the page remains a primary object of literary study.
Marxism and Critical Theory Marxist literary theories tend to focus on the representation of class conflict as well as the reinforcement of class distinctions through the medium of literature. Marxist theorists use traditional techniques of literary analysis but subordinate aesthetic concerns to the final social and political meanings of literature.
Marxist theorist often champion authors sympathetic to the working classes and authors whose work challenges economic equalities found in capitalist societies. In keeping with the totalizing spirit of Marxism, literary theories arising from the Marxist paradigm have not only sought new ways of understanding the relationship between economic production and literature, but all cultural production as well.
Marxist analyses of society and history have had a profound effect on literary theory and practical criticism, most notably in the development of "New Historicism" and "Cultural Materialism. Walter Benjamin broke new ground in his work in his study of aesthetics and the reproduction of the work of art. The Frankfurt School of philosophers, including most notably Max Horkheimer, Theodor Adorno, and Herbert Marcuse—after their emigration to the United States—played a key role in introducing Marxist assessments of culture into the mainstream of American academic life.
These thinkers became associated with what is known as "Critical theory," one of the constituent components of which was a critique of the instrumental use of reason in advanced capitalist culture.
Eagleton is known both as a Marxist theorist and as a popularizer of theory by means of his widely read overview, Literary Theory. Lentricchia likewise became influential through his account of trends in theory, After the New Criticism. Jameson is a more diverse theorist, known both for his impact on Marxist theories of culture and for his position as one of the leading figures in theoretical postmodernism. Structuralism and Poststructuralism Like the "New Criticism," "Structuralism" sought to bring to literary studies a set of objective criteria for analysis and a new intellectual rigor.
Like Plato, Saussure regarded the signifier words, marks, symbols as arbitrary and unrelated to the concept, the signified, to which it referred.
Within the way a particular society uses language and signs, meaning was constituted by a system of "differences" between units of the language. Particular meanings were of less interest than the underlying structures of signification that made meaning itself possible, often expressed as an emphasis on "langue" rather than "parole. Greimas, Gerard Genette, and Barthes. The philosopher Roland Barthes proved to be a key figure on the divide between "Structuralism" and "Poststructuralism.
The most important theorist of "Deconstruction," Jacques Derrida, has asserted, "There is no getting outside text," indicating a kind of free play of signification in which no fixed, stable meaning is possible. Other tendencies in the moment after "Deconstruction" that share some of the intellectual tendencies of "Poststructuralism" would included the "Reader response" theories of Stanley Fish, Jane Tompkins, and Wolfgang Iser. Lacanian psychoanalysis, an updating of the work of Sigmund Freud, extends "Postructuralism" to the human subject with further consequences for literary theory.
According to Lacan, the fixed, stable self is a Romantic fiction; like the text in "Deconstruction," the self is a decentered mass of traces left by our encounter with signs, visual symbols, language, etc. Barthes applies these currents of thought in his famous declaration of the "death" of the Author: "writing is the destruction of every voice, of every point of origin" while also applying a similar "Poststructuralist" view to the Reader: "the reader is without history, biography, psychology; he is simply that someone who holds together in a single field all the traces by which the written text is constituted.
Foucault played a critical role in the development of the postmodern perspective that knowledge is constructed in concrete historical situations in the form of discourse; knowledge is not communicated by discourse but is discourse itself, can only be encountered textually.
Following Nietzsche, Foucault performs what he calls "genealogies," attempts at deconstructing the unacknowledged operation of power and knowledge to reveal the ideologies that make domination of one group by another seem "natural. New Historicism and Cultural Materialism "New Historicism," a term coined by Stephen Greenblatt, designates a body of theoretical and interpretive practices that began largely with the study of early modern literature in the United States. According to "New Historicism," the circulation of literary and non-literary texts produces relations of social power within a culture.
New Historicist thought differs from traditional historicism in literary studies in several crucial ways. Rejecting traditional historicism's premise of neutral inquiry, "New Historicism" accepts the necessity of making historical value judgments.
According to "New Historicism," we can only know the textual history of the past because it is "embedded," a key term, in the textuality of the present and its concerns.
Text and context are less clearly distinct in New Historicist practice. Traditional separations of literary and non-literary texts, "great" literature and popular literature, are also fundamentally challenged. For the "New Historicist," all acts of expression are embedded in the material conditions of a culture. Texts are examined with an eye for how they reveal the economic and social realities, especially as they produce ideology and represent power or subversion.
Louis Montrose, another major innovator and exponent of "New Historicism," describes a fundamental axiom of the movement as an intellectual belief in "the textuality of history and the historicity of texts. The translation of the work of Mikhail Bakhtin on carnival coincided with the rise of the "New Historicism" and "Cultural Materialism" and left a legacy in work of other theorists of influence like Peter Stallybrass and Jonathan Dollimore.
In its period of ascendancy during the s, "New Historicism" drew criticism from the political left for its depiction of counter-cultural expression as always co-opted by the dominant discourses. However, "New Historicism" continues to exercise a major influence in the humanities and in the extended conception of literary studies.
Ethnic Studies and Postcolonial Criticism "Ethnic Studies," sometimes referred to as "Minority Studies," has an obvious historical relationship with "Postcolonial Criticism" in that Euro-American imperialism and colonization in the last four centuries, whether external empire or internal slavery has been directed at recognizable ethnic groups: African and African-American, Chinese, the subaltern peoples of India, Irish, Latino, Native American, and Philipino, among others. Though the two fields are increasingly finding points of intersection—the work of bell hooks, for example—and are both activist intellectual enterprises, "Ethnic Studies and "Postcolonial Criticism" have significant differences in their history and ideas.
Dubois, we find an early attempt to theorize the position of African-Americans within dominant white culture through his concept of "double consciousness," a dual identity including both "American" and "Negro.
Afro-Caribbean and African writers—Aime Cesaire, Frantz Fanon, Chinua Achebe—have made significant early contributions to the theory and practice of ethnic criticism that explores the traditions, sometimes suppressed or underground, of ethnic literary activity while providing a critique of representations of ethnic identity as found within the majority culture.
Ethnic and minority literary theory emphasizes the relationship of cultural identity to individual identity in historical circumstances of overt racial oppression. More recently, scholars and writers such as Henry Louis Gates, Toni Morrison, and Kwame Anthony Appiah have brought attention to the problems inherent in applying theoretical models derived from Euro-centric paradigms that is, structures of thought to minority works of literature while at the same time exploring new interpretive strategies for understanding the vernacular common speech traditions of racial groups that have been historically marginalized by dominant cultures.
Though not the first writer to explore the historical condition of postcolonialism, the Palestinian literary theorist Edward Said's book Orientalism is generally regarded as having inaugurated the field of explicitly "Postcolonial Criticism" in the West. Said argues that the concept of "the Orient" was produced by the "imaginative geography" of Western scholarship and has been instrumental in the colonization and domination of non-Western societies.
Moreover, theorists like Homi K. The work of Gayatri C. Spivak has focused attention on the question of who speaks for the colonial "Other" and the relation of the ownership of discourse and representation to the development of the postcolonial subjectivity. Like feminist and ethnic theory, "Postcolonial Criticism" pursues not merely the inclusion of the marginalized literature of colonial peoples into the dominant canon and discourse.
In this respect, "Postcolonial Criticism" is activist and adversarial in its basic aims. Postcolonial theory has brought fresh perspectives to the role of colonial peoples—their wealth, labor, and culture—in the development of modern European nation states.
While "Postcolonial Criticism" emerged in the historical moment following the collapse of the modern colonial empires, the increasing globalization of culture, including the neo-colonialism of multinational capitalism, suggests a continued relevance for this field of inquiry.
Gender Studies and Queer Theory Gender theory came to the forefront of the theoretical scene first as feminist theory but has subsequently come to include the investigation of all gender and sexual categories and identities. Feminist gender theory followed slightly behind the reemergence of political feminism in the United States and Western Europe during the s.
Political feminism of the so-called "second wave" had as its emphasis practical concerns with the rights of women in contemporary societies, women's identity, and the representation of women in media and culture. These causes converged with early literary feminist practice, characterized by Elaine Showalter as "gynocriticism," which emphasized the study and canonical inclusion of works by female authors as well as the depiction of women in male-authored canonical texts.
Feminist gender theory is postmodern in that it challenges the paradigms and intellectual premises of western thought, but also takes an activist stance by proposing frequent interventions and alternative epistemological positions meant to change the social order.