The historical use of literature poses a methodological challenge, used directly as a document, fiction is unreliable. Postformalist criticism and theory suggest approaches to the novel more appropriate than those historians have traditionally used. Historians should not conceive of the text as document but think of it instead as a structuralist system, discourse, or code. Reader-response criticism merits the historian's serious attention; by studying how readers in the past responded to fiction, the social historian may read the (...) novel to understand its audience and the socially significant conventions it preferred in the novel. The novel is a mental world with an actual historical context peopled by ordinary readers through which mentalities can be investigated. (shrink)
The Critical Circle investigates the hermeneutical circle involved in historical inquiry and literary criticism. Hoy attempts to analyze the interrelation of literary understanding and historical understanding, arguing for the essential interconnection of understanding, interpretation, and criticism. For Hoy, the account of the conditions for the possibility of understanding reveals the conditions for understanding and interpretation and sets the stage for explicating the role of criticism. According to the hermeneutical account, the understanding is conditioned by self-understanding, which is (...) "conditioned by the tradition in which it stands and the continuing community of researchers to which it relates". Such a hermeneutic rejects certain extreme dichotomies such as: objectivism-subjectivism; past-present; immanence-transcendence; literary understanding-historical understanding. (shrink)
Porphyry‘s “On the Cave of the Nymphs” inaugurates a style of philosophicoallegorical interpretation of literary texts that flourished in antiquity and finds analogues in criticism down to the present. It is distinguished by its use of literary interpretation to think through speculative problems of philosophy and theology. Although it became suspect in terms of Enlightenment philological principles prescribing interpretation of the text “on its own terms,” this kind of criticism reveals the originally philosophical motives and purpose of literary (...)criticism and restores to literature the vocation of disclosing a properly poetic truth higher than that of fact or history. The history of this type of speculative criticism stemming from Porphyry‘s reading of Homer is traced forward through Latin allegorical readings of epic revolving around Virgil. This itinerary highlights the perennial and inevitable tensions between philological and philosophical approaches to interpreting literature as a revelation of truth. (shrink)
The article focuses on an analysis of Hart Crane’s essay “Note on the Paintings of David Siqueiros.” One of Crane’s few art-historical texts, the critical piece in question is first of all a tribute to the American poet’s friend, the Mexican painter David Siqueiros. The author of a portrait of Crane, Siqueiros is a major artist, one of the leading figures that marked the history of Mexican painting in the first half of the twentieth century. While it is interesting (...) to delve into the way Crane approaches painting in general and Siqueiros’ œuvre in particular, an analysis of the essay with which the present article is concerned is also worthwhile for another reason. Like many examples of art criticism—and literary criticism, for that matter—”Note on the Paintings of David Siqueiros” reveals a lot not only about the artist it revolves around, but also about its author, an artist in his own right. In a text written in the last year of his life, Hart Crane therefore voices concerns which have preoccupied him as a poet and which, more importantly, are central to modernist art and literature. (shrink)
Pandey, V. Introduction.--Kalelkar, K. S. Jainism, a familyhood of all religions.--David, M. D. From Risabha to Mahavira.--Chalil, J. E. Glimpses of Southern Jainism.--Gopani, A. S. Life and culture in Jaina narrative literature, 8th, 9th and 10th century A.D.--Gopani, A. S. Position of women in Jaina literature.--Ranka, R. Evolution of Jaina thought.--Pandey, V. Jaina philosophy and religion.--Shah, C. C. Jainism and modern life.--Sankalia, H. D. The great renunciation.--Shah, U. P. Jaina contribution to Indian art.--Gorakshkar, S. Early metal images of (...) the Jainas.--Bhagwati, U. Bibliographical aids for the study of Jainism. (shrink)
One of Ireland's foremost literary and cultural historians, Terence Brown's command of the intellectual and cultural currents running through the Irish literary canon is second to none, and he has been enormously influential in shaping the field of Irish studies. These essays reflect the key themes of Brown's distinguished career, most crucially his critical engagement with the post-colonial model of Irish cultural and literary history currently dominant in Irish Studies. With essays on major figures such as Yeats, MacNeice, Joyce (...) and Beckett, as well as contemporary authors including Seamus Heaney, Derek Mahon, Michael Longley, Paul Muldoon and Brian Friel, this volume is a major contribution to scholarship, directing scholars and students to new approaches to twentieth-century Irish cultural and literary history. (shrink)
In 1902 Croce published a book on aesthetics which was partly cause and partly effect of a philosophical and cultural revolution in Italy at the time. It had such a great success that it was soon translated into the major foreign languages, including English in 1909, with the title Aesthetic as Science of Expression and General Linguistics. The book did not have, in fact, that much aesthetic content, and its subtitle is more descriptive than its title. It was more of (...) a meta-aesthetics or meta-philosophy of art, critical of any philosophical doctrines which do not give art its proper place among human activities. This was Croce's first book-length philosophical monograph and antedates his extensive works on literary criticism for which he became so famous. (shrink)
Benedetto Croce’s influence pervades Anglo-Saxon culture, but, ironically, before Giovanni Gullace heeded the call of his colleagues and provided this urgently needed translation of _La Poesia, _speakers of English had no access to Croce’s major work and final rendering of his esthetic theory.__ __ _Aesthetic, _published in 1902 and translated in 1909, represents most of what the English-speaking world knows about Croce’s theory. It is, asserts Gullace, “no more than a first sketch of a thought that developed, clarified, and corrected (...) itself through new literary experience and more mature reflection.” During the 34 years between _Aesthetic _and _La Poesia _, for example, Croce added a striking new element to his thought: the analysis of prose literature. Gullace’s introduction to _La Poesia _constitutes a major undertaking in its own right. It is aimed at acquainting the reader with the evolution of Croce’s thought and at explaining the relationship between this final work and the philosopher’s previous work in esthetic theory and literary criticism. __ _La Poesia _is divided into two parts, text and postscripts. The text consists of four chapters: Poetry and Literature; The Life of Poetry; Criticism and History of Poetry; and The Formation of the Poet and the Precepts. Croce saw the postscripts “as a relaxed conversation after the tension of theoretical exposition. In Gullace’s translation the text and relevant postscripts appear conveniently side by side in a double column. Gullace has annotated both text and postscripts. (shrink)
This book focuses on how we perceive, know and interpret culture across disciplinary boundaries. The study ranges from the Bible and classical works to those by and about men and women in Europe, the Americas and beyond of Native, African, European and different backgrounds.
Can subjective taste regulate social norms or political practices? This book argues that from the late seventeenth century to the present national cultures have sought to regulate the democratic subject through the academic form of arguments about the proper relations of aesthetics to ethics and politics. In so doing it offers a radical reconsideration of the history of modernity, tracing the emergence of criticism as a socio-cultural practice across all the major European nations, and drawing on an extensive (...) range of European literature and philosophy. (shrink)
German classicist's monumental study of the origins of European thought in Greek literature and philosophy. Brilliant, widely influential. Includes "Homer's View of Man," "The Olympian Gods," "The Rise of the Individual in the Early Greek Lyric," "Pindar's Hymn to Zeus," "Myth and Reality in Greek Tragedy," and "Aristophanes and Aesthetic Criticism.".
This paper considers the disciplines of literature and history and the contributions each makes to the discourse of bioethics. In each case I note the pedagogic ends that can be enacted though the appropriate use of the each of these disciplines in the sphere of medical education, particularly in the medical ethics classroom.1 I then explore the contribution that both these disciplines and their respective methodologies can and do bring to the academic field of bioethics. I conclude with (...) a brief consideration of the relations between literature and history with particular attention to the possibilities for a future bioethics informed by history and literature after the empirical turn. (shrink)
Introduction: Chinese philosophy and the translation of disciplines -- The faces of masters literature until the Eastern Han -- Scenes of instruction and master bodies in the Analects -- From scenes of instruction to scenes of construction: Mozi -- Interiority, human nature, and exegesis in Mencius -- Authorship, human nature, and persuasion in Xunzi -- The race for precedence: polemics and the vacuum of traditions in Laozi -- Zhuangzi and the art of negation -- The self-regulating state, paranoia, and (...) rhetoric in Han Feizi -- Epilogue: a future for masters literature and Chinese philosophy. (shrink)
Introduction -- The muse of paralysis -- Horizon of conquest: Eugene Fromentin's Algerian narratives -- Slow progress: Jean Paulhan and Madagascar -- Frustration: Michel Leiris -- Atopia: Roland Barthes -- The wake of Ulysses.
This monumental collection of new and recent essays from an international team of eminent scholars represents the best contemporary critical thinking relating to both literary and philosophical studies of literature. Helpfully groups essays into the field's main sub-categories, among them ‘Relations Between Philosophy and Literature’, ‘Emotional Engagement and the Experience of Reading’, ‘Literature and the Moral Life’, and ‘Literary Language’ Offers a combination of analytical precision and literary richness Represents an unparalleled work of reference for students and (...) specialists alike, ideal for course use. (shrink)
Applying ideas drawn from contemporary critical theory, this book historicizes psychoanalysis through a new and significant theorization of the Gothic. The central premise is that the nineteenth-century Gothic produced a radical critique of accounts of sublimity and Freudian psychoanalysis. This book makes a major contribution to an understanding of both the nineteenth century and the Gothic discourse which challenged the dominant ideas of that period. Writers explored include Mary Shelley, Edgar Allan Poe, Robert Louis Stevenson, and Bram Stoker.
This is the long-awaited publication of a set of writings by the British philosopher, historian, and archaeologist R.G. Collingwood (1889-1943) on critical, anthropological, and cultural themes only hinted at in his previously available work. At the core are six essays on folktale and magic in which Collingwood applies the principles of his philosophy of history to problems in the long-term evolution of human society and culture. The volume opens with three substantial introductory essays by the editors, authorities in their (...) various fields, who provide their explanatory and contextual notes to guide the reader through the texts. The Philosophy of Enchantment highlights the broad range of Collingwood's intellectual engagements, their integration, and their relevance to current areas of debate in the fields of philosophy, cultural studies, social and literary history, and anthropology. (shrink)
The first two volumes of a four-volume study, destined surely to become the standard work in its field. Literary criticism in the broadest sense is the book's subject, but the author tries to avoid purely philosophical aesthetics at one extreme--Kant is given 3 pages to Schiller's 24--as well as unsubstantiated judgments of taste at the other. Since he tries to see the past as bearing upon and productive of the literary theory of the present, the book might be said (...) to be more an account of the sources and growth of contemporary thinking about literature and criticism than a "history" in the usual sense. Professor Wellek has a rich store of scholarly knowledge at his disposal, and his interpretive generalizations are well supported by references and texts; yet the argument moves easily and clearly. A fine piece of creative scholarship.--V. C. C. (shrink)
Cognitive Science, Literature, and the Arts is the first student-friendly introduction to the uses of cognitive science in the study of literature, written specifically for the non-scientist. Patrick Colm Hogan guides the reader through all of the major theories of cognitive science, focusing on those areas that are most important to fostering a new understanding of the production and reception of literature. This accessible volume provides a strong foundation of the basic principles of cognitive science, and allows (...) us to begin to understand how the brain works and makes us feel as we read. (shrink)
Recent philosophical discussion about the relation between fiction and reality pays little attention to our moral involvement with literature. Frank Palmer's purpose is to investigate how our appreciation of literary works calls upon and develops our capacity for moral understanding. He explores a wide range of philosophical questions about the relation of art to morality, and challenges theories that he regards as incompatible with a humane view of literary art. Palmer considers, in particular, the extent to which the values (...) and moral concepts involved in our understanding of human beings can be said to enter into our understanding of, and response to, fictional characters. The scope of his discussion encompasses literary aesthetics, ethics, and epistemology, and he makes extensive reference to literary examples. (shrink)
If any emergent historical criticism will tend by its own choice toward inclusiveness and eclecticism, it is also likely to be constrained by more subtle forms of complicity with the theoretical subculture within which it seeks its audience. It is not in principle impossible that we might choose to set going an initiative that is very different indeed from the methods and approaches already in place. But is nonetheless clear that we must be aware, in some propaedeutic way, of (...) the predispositions for or against such change that are latent in the horizons of the field as they are presently conceived and transmitted. An account of these predispositions will take up most of the following essay. Whether or not the particular texts I shall discuss constitute anything as firm as an establishment in the absolute sense does not matter much: they neither sum up the ongoing careers of their particular authors, in the diachronic sense, nor do they represent any simple totality in the critical culture of the late 1960s. All we need here is the weaker assumption: that these writings by Derrida, Paul de Man, Michel Foucault, and Pierre Macherey do offer, by virtue of their very notoriety, evidence of the priorities within the discipline that have afforded them their reputations in the first place. Thus, while they do not in themselves prohibit the emergence of alternatives, they do give us clues about the residual pressures that might constrain those alternatives, and they signal the questions that the historical party must respond to if it is to be recognized as making an important contribution to a debate. My argument will be that the influential critics of the late 1960s have made it very hard indeed to find a place for history, so much so that the avowedly Marxist alternative set forth by Jameson finds itself making disabling concessions to those very influences. I do not claim to describe the entire range of options and alternatives, and indeed offer no discussion of the most excitingly contested field of all, that represented by contemporary feminisms. I mean instead to demonstrate, through a reading of those methodologies that have become authoritative, that the status of historical inquiry has been so eroded that its reactive renaissance, in whatever form, threatens to remain merely gestural and generic. “History” promises thus to function as legitimating any reference to a context beyond literature exclusively conceived, whether it be one of discourse, biography, political or material circumstance. In particular, given the current popularity of discourse analysis, it seems likely that for many practitioners the historical method will remain founded in covertly idealist reconstructions. David Simpson is professor of English and comparative literature at the University of Colorado, Boulder. He is the author of various books and essays, most recently The Politics of American English, 1776-1850 and Wordsworth’s Historical Imagination: The Poetry of Displacement. (shrink)
Dilemma one, Between the theoretical concepts and authorial intention -- Dilemma two, Good manners and eristic -- Dilemma three, Between strangeness and familiarity -- Dilemma four, Between scholarly research and faith.