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A Handbook of Critical Approaches to Literature

by Wilfred L. Guerin, Earle Labor, Lee Morgan, Jeanne C. Reesman, John R. Willingham

ISBN 0195160177 / 9780195160178 / 0-19-516017-7
Publisher Oxford University Press, USA
Language English
Edition Softcover
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Book summary

Now in its fifth edition, A Handbook of Critical Approaches to Literature has become both a standard introduction to the close reading of literature and an invaluable resource for English graduate students. It offers students and other readers a variety of ways to interpret a piece of literature, ranging from historical/biographical and moral/philosophical approaches through the formalist, the psychological, the mythic and archetypal, and into such contemporary perspectives as feminist criticism and cultural studies. The book applies these diverse approaches to the same six classic works--"To His Coy Mistress," Hamlet, Huckleberry Finn, "Young Goodman Brown," "Everyday Use," and, new to this edition, Frankenstein--showing students how various methods offer different insights and enriching their response to and understanding of the individual works. The fifth edition is enhanced by the addition of Frankenstein, a complex work that lends itself to multiple levels of interpretation and is familiar in both its cinematic and literary forms. The coverage of Frankenstein incorporates material on popular culture--discussions of various fiction, stage, film, and television appearances of the work--as well as several photographs. This edition also features organizational and content changes that bring the volume up-to-date with contemporary literary criticism. Offering a valuable combination of theory and practice, A Handbook of Critical Approaches to Literature, Fifth Edition, is ideal for courses in literary criticism or theory and can also be used in introduction to literature courses. [via]