Cultural Criticism: A Primer of Key Concepts by Arthur Asa Berger PDF

By Arthur Asa Berger

ISBN-10: 0803957335

ISBN-13: 9780803957336

In this advisor to cultural feedback, Arthur Asa Berger provides complicated options in jargon-free language, making the publication an excellent introductory textual content. It covers the main theorists, strategies, and topic components, from literary, sociological and psychoanalytical theories of semiotics and Marxism. Berger brings cultural feedback to existence via making those theories correct to determine scholars' lives. Illustrating his motives with excerpts from vintage works, Berger supplies readers a feeling of the fashion of significant thinkers and is helping position them in context. there's an in depth bibliography with a purpose to be a useful source in case you desire to discover the themes in larger intensity.

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Their approach was mechanistic; they looked for the devices (a term they used) in literary works that make them function as literature. Their concern, then, was with the formal properties of Literary Theory and Cultural Criticism 33 literary works instead of the content of these works (reflections of society, its values and beliefs, and so on). They argued that many of the things that traditional critics had focused on—figurative language, symbols, images—are found in everyday language use, so it did not make sense to focus on these phenomena, in that they were both literary and extraliterary.

In art, it is our experience of the process of construction that counts, not the final product. (Shklovsky, quoted in Scholes, 1974, pp. 83-84) Literary Theory and Cultural Criticism 35 As Scholes (1974) points out, defamiliarization techniques themselves become conventions. In literature, for example, we see this in the creation of point of view, style, and plot, which start off as agents of defamiliarization and become, eventually, conventions. The writer ends up, ultimately, having to create new techniques of defamiliarization—techniques that expose the old techniques to ridicule and, ultimately, parody.

They are intertextual (a concept that will be discussed in more detail in Chapter 4) in that they are affected, to varying degrees, by texts that have preceded them and have, to varying degrees, affected their creators, and, at the same time, they also anticipate the future. This concept, dialogism, gives us new insights into the creative process and into the role the audience plays in communication, whether it be conversation or the creation of artistic texts. It also points out how important the cultural context is for creators, because the creators of artistic texts, whether they realize it or not, are profoundly affected by the social and cultural milieux in which they find themselves and by the texts and other creative works that already exist and that cast a shadow on, or provide a frame of reference (when not providing models) for, all works being created at a given moment.

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Cultural Criticism: A Primer of Key Concepts by Arthur Asa Berger


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