Literary Criticism from Plato to the Present: An Introduction
January 2011, ©2010, Wiley-Blackwell
- An indispensable and intellectually stimulating introduction to the history of literary criticism and theory
- Introduces the major movements, figures, and texts of literary criticism
- Provides historical context and shows the interconnections between various theories
- An ideal text for all students of literature and criticism
Part I Classical Literary Criticism and Rhetoric.
1 Classical Literary Criticism.
Introduction to the Classical Period.
Plato (428–ca. 347 BC).
Aristotle (384–322 BC).
2 The Traditions of Rhetoric.
The Subsequent History of Rhetoric: An Overview.
The Legacy of Rhetoric.
3 Greek and Latin Criticism During the Roman Empire.
Horace (65–8 BC).
Longinus (First Century AD).
Part II The Medieval Era.
4 The Early Middle Ages.
Intellectual and Theological Currents.
5 The Later Middle Ages.
Intellectual Currents of the Later Middle Ages.
The Traditions of Medieval Criticism.
Transitions: Medieval Humanism.
Part III The Early Modern Period to the Enlightenment.
6 The Early Modern Period.
Confronting the Classical Heritage.
Defending the Vernacular.
Poetics and the Defense of Poetry.
Poetic Form and Rhetoric.
7 Neoclassical Literary Criticism.
Neoclassicism in England.
8 The Enlightenment.
Historical and Intellectual Background.
Enlightenment Literary Criticism: Language, Taste, and Imagination.
9 The Aesthetics of Kant and Hegel.
Immanuel Kant (1724–1804).
Part IV Romanticism and the Later Nineteenth Century.
11 Realism, Naturalism, Symbolism, and Aestheticism.
Historical Background: The Later Nineteenth Century.
Realism and Naturalism.
Symbolism and Aestheticism.
12 The Heterological Thinkers.
Arthur Schopenhauer (1788–1860).
Friedrich Nietzsche (1844–1900).
Henri Bergson (1859–1941).
Matthew Arnold (1822–1888).
Part V The Twentieth Century: A Brief Introduction.
13 From Liberal Humanism to Formalism.
The Background of Modernism.
The Poetics of Modernism: W. B. Yeats, Ezra Pound, and T. S. Eliot.
The New Criticism.
14 Socially Conscious Criticism of the Earlier Twentieth Century.
F. R. Leavis.
Marxist and Left-Wing Criticism.
The Fundamental Principles of Marxism.
Marxist Literary Criticism: A Historical Overview.
Early Feminist Criticism: Simone de Beauvoir and Virginia Woolf.
15 Phenomenology, Existentialism, Structuralism.
16 The Era of Poststructuralism (I): Later Marxism, Psychoanalysis, Deconstruction.
Later Marxist Criticism.
17 The Era of Poststructuralism (II): Postmodernism, Modern Feminism, Gender Studies.
Jurgen Habermas (b. 1929).
Jean Baudrillard (1929–2007).
Jean-Fran¸cois Lyotard (1924–1998).
bell hooks (Gloria Jean Watkins; b. 1952).
18 The Later Twentieth Century: New Historicism, Reader-Response Theory, Postcolonial Criticism, Cultural Studies.
The New Historicism.
Reader-Response and Reception Theory.
Epilogue New Directions: Looking Back, Looking Forward.
"Rafey Habib's book carves out a distinctive niche in this lately much-discussed but still strikingly eventful and rewarding history of thought."
—Christopher Norris, Cardiff University