Types of Literary Criticism

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  • Topic: Literary criticism, Literary theory, Literature
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Types of Literary Criticism
Since ancient times, readers have debated and critiqued literature from a variety of perspectives. Some have looked at a story or play from a moral stance, considering how values are represented in a text. Another critic might evaluate a poem in terms of its form. Recent critics have looked at literature to see what it might be saying about our lives in society, our political or power relations, gender roles, or sexuality. Below I have summarized some types of literary criticism you might consider when reading or writing about literature. If you're interested in knowing more, see the Purdue Online Writing Lab or OWL or read Critical Theory Today: A User-Friendly Guide, by Louis Tyson. The Gavilan library website offers resources for students conducting research on literature. (You will need a Gavilan library card to access this information and can apply for a card in person or online.) The library also has a helpful website on Academic Research Guidelines that will help you identify legitmate sources for your research and avoid plagiarism. See me, a librarian, and/or a writing assistant at the Gavilan Writing Center for help with writing about literature. * Moral Criticism, Dramatic Construction (~360 BC-present)

* Formalism, New Criticism, Neo-Aristotelian Criticism (1930s-present) * Psychoanalytic Criticism, Jungian Criticism(1930s-present) * Marxist Criticism (1930s-present)
* Reader-Response Criticism (1960s-present)
* Structuralism/Semiotics (1920s-present)
* Post-Structuralism/Deconstruction (1966-present)
* New Historicism/Cultural Studies (1980s-present)
* Post-Colonial Criticism (1990s-present)
* Feminist Criticism (1960s-present)
* Gender/Queer Studies (1970s-present)
Sociological criticism: Like historical criticism, sociological criticism examines literature in the cultural, economic, and political context in which it is written or received. This type of criticism may analyze the social content of a literary...
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