One of the most influential movements in modern critical scholarship, the New Criticism is a philosophy of literary interpretation that stresses the importance of studying literary texts as complete works of art in themselves. Although the term New Criticism was first coined in the nineteenth century, it was not until American critic and poet John Crow Ransom, founder of the wrote a book titled (1941), that it became established in common academic and literary usage. In essence, the New Critics were reacting against established trends in American criticism, arguing for the primacy of the literary text instead of focusing on interpretations based on context. However, as René Wellek has noted in various essays detailing the principles of New Criticism, proponents of this theory had many differences among them, and beyond the importance the New Critics afforded the literary text itself, there were many differences in the way they approached critical study of literary texts. Wellek writes that among the growing number of New Critics in the 1930s, there were few that could be easily grouped together. For example, he puts Ransom, Allen Tate, Cleanth Brooks, and Robert Penn Warren among the leaders of what he calls the “Southern Critics.” Mostly, they are grouped together due to their reaction against previously established schools of criticism, such as impressionist criticism, the humanist movement, the naturalist movement, and the Marxists, and the fact that many of them taught at Southern universities at the time they created the theory of New Criticism. In addition to rallying against traditional modes of literary interpretations, the most significant contribution made by the New Critics, according to Wellek, was the success with which they established criticism itself as a major academic discipline.
As with the , essays existed in Japan several centuries before they developed in Europe with a genre of essays known as — loosely connected essays and fragmented ideas. Zuihitsu have existed since almost the beginnings of Japanese literature. Many of the most noted early works of Japanese literature are in this genre. Notable examples include (c. 1000), by court lady , and (1330), by particularly renowned Japanese Buddhist monk . Kenkō described his short writings similarly to Montaigne, referring to them as "nonsensical thoughts" written in "idle hours". Another noteworthy difference from Europe is that women have traditionally written in Japan, though the more formal, Chinese-influenced writings of male writers were more prized at the time.
"Literary Theory Paper". Do my essay. 21 Oct. 2017
Turner's book can be divided into two distinct parts, four essays devoted to theoretical topics, and three chapters of interpretive literary criticism. The chapters of criticism look as if they have been written up from lecture notes for seminars on English Renaissance literature, Shakespeare, and Thoreau's . The readings are presented as examples of a "participatory" form of criticism. In practice, this means a sympathetic exposition of primary texts. The weakness of this method is that it offers no external standpoint, no independent critical perspective, so that one misses a chief merit of good criticism--the sense of what the literature means some one particular mind. With all its limitations of conceptual order, the theoretical part of the book gives a much more decided impression of a distinct literary personality.