Eliot into the Leavisite
school of Literary Criticism.
If, unlike Ross and his colleagues, Amis finds little liberating potential in consumerism and mass culture, still, Self's conflicting alliances with Martina/Martin Amis and Selina/Fielding do not comprise a Leavisite
fable about culture's capacity to stave off the corrosive addiction of consumerism.
Leavis were showing how to read literary and mass culture texts with an eye on the values and historical forms of life expressed through them, a tradition from which Raymond Williams would emerge, bending aspects of the Leavisite
project into a Marxian analysis of culture and society (1958; see also Dworkin, 1997).
Certainly these texts cannot be understood or rendered valuable in Leavisite
terms that privileged densely symbolic highbrow literature or in the nationalist terms that would later dominate university literature courses in Canada.
It had on the one hand the inheritance of the Leavisite
literary criticism it was trying to escape from, and on the other the crude Marxism it had rejected.
The literary press in Britain has eagerly taken up the Leavisite
slack, moonlighting as the moral advocate of the self-consciously middlebrow.
There is no trace of Leavisite
pickiness in his choice of examples as he also invites us to think about and then enjoy some splendidly uncanonical works like chapbooks, the Russian lubki and modern Japanese manga.
Ian Hunter's years of analysing the 'literary gaze', identifying the contours of the 'seminar of conscience', breaking down the regimes in place for 'learning the literature lesson' possibly derive from his having been drummed out of his Honours year in a Leavisite
English department in Melbourne for the crimes of reading William Empson and Roland Barthes, and for presenting as a student more interested in matters philosophical than matters English literary.
However, in seeking to offer an alternative, Laughey adopts a Leavisite
By choosing to focus their study of Byatt on her "critical storytelling", the authors evade the pitfall of formulating a partisan approach, of which Byatt, that "non-belonger to schools of thought" (Byatt 1991: 2) has often made a disavowal: "she objects to the indiscriminate application, so common in contemporary academia, of critical metanarratives to a work of fiction, be they post-structuralist, postmodernist or Leavisite
The consequent sense of mission for literary critics--their identification and elucidation of the profounder, non-timebound meanings to be found in literary works--helps explain local inflections of Leavisite
criticism in Australia, though the tag itself merely denoted (as one can see in retrospect) the more strenuous expressions of a view of the role of criticism that was far more widely felt.
23) Rickword's 1920s readings of cultural history--implicit in which was a sense of the fragmentation of a common culture leading to the alienation and rootlessness of the modern writer--shared much with the Leavisite
analysis he influenced.