Full Text

Critical Theory and the Novel

PATRICIA WAUGH


Extract

To try to draw together the broad constellation of practices known as “theory” and the loose aggregate of conventions constituting the genre of the novel is a complex business, but critical theory helped to shape the work of novelists since 1960, just as it helped to reshape a sense of the canonical histories of the novel as a genre. From the late 1960s, there was a pervasive rethinking of the very foundations and conditions of thought across all the disciplines of the humanities and social sciences. In this sense, the theoretical turn was general, but its manifestations and objects were diverse, varying in important ways from discipline to discipline, and from one cultural and national context to another. But as with the broader “theoretical turn” of the 1960s, the literary or critical theory that flourished across departments of Anglo-American letters represented a revolt against positivist and empiricist assumptions in criticism. For poststructuralism, neo-Marxism, psychoanalysis, and narrative theory were all depth models of knowledge that sought a reorientation toward the a priori as the search for underlying formal relations that might provide the conditions for grasping and expressing the phenomena of the world and of human experience. First, with the technical linguistics of Chomsky and, thereafter, with the more easily assimilable linguistics of Saussure, structuralism ... log in or subscribe to read full text

Log In

You are not currently logged-in to Blackwell Reference Online

If your institution has a subscription, you can log in here:

 

     Forgotten your password?

Find out how to subscribe.

Your library does not have access to this title. Please contact your librarian to arrange access.


[ access key 0 : accessibility information including access key list ] [ access key 1 : home page ] [ access key 2 : skip navigation ] [ access key 6 : help ] [ access key 9 : contact us ] [ access key 0 : accessibility statement ]

Blackwell Publishing Home Page

Blackwell Reference Online ® is a Blackwell Publishing Inc. registered trademark
Technology partner: Semantico Ltd.

Blackwell Publishing and its licensors hold the copyright in all material held in Blackwell Reference Online. No material may be resold or published elsewhere without Blackwell Publishing's written consent, save as authorised by a licence with Blackwell Publishing or to the extent required by the applicable law.

Back to Top