This collection of essays defining literary theories is divided into twelve parts: structuralism, feminism, Marxism, 'reader-response', psychoanalytical criticism, deconstruction, post-structuralism, post-modernism, new historicism
, post-colonial theory, gay studies/queer theory and cultural studies.
The variety of critical perspectives that these essays offer (poststructuralism, new historicism
, feminism, and cultural studies) enables McDowell to resist situating herself within a particular theoretical perspective.
Although readers may take exception to Chandler's representation of the "concept of the `historical situation'" as "under theorized" at this point in critical history, Chandler offers an exceptional discussion of Romantic literary historicism to argue that the new historicism
theoretically articulated during the latter half of the twentieth century "really" began during the Romantic period: "we most invoke the terms of a historicism that is emergent within Romanticism when we make the historicist critique" (36).
It began as a historical pursuit, became in turn avowedly formalist in the middle decades of this century, and now -- be it in the guise of new historicism
, post-colonialism or feminist studies -- appears to have discovered again the claim of context.
The fact that it was not a movement, that it was not a common set of practices had, until the publication of The New Historicism
Reader, been one of the New Historicism
's most problematic - if not baffling - issues.
makes history itself an object of interpretation; the critic reads literary work to uncover the ideologies that determine culture and law.
It is a useful collection of pretty uniformly effective papers which seek to restore balance to a field unhelpfully tilted towards Shakespearian concerns alone and which demonstrate the ways in which early modem studies have moved on after the New Historicism
Bermann's incisive critique of New Historicism
from the point of view of feminist literary criticism (which she argues to be one of its major precursors), and Kathleen L.
Interdisciplinary in its approach, new historicism
conceives the literary work to be inseparable from the cultures in which the work is produced and read, therefore embedded in social history, which itself is a construct reflective of the critic's culture.
Thomas College, Pala, India) studies the possibilities of the branch of literary theory known as New Historicism
, and applies it to a body of texts produced between the 12th and 16th centuries AD in the southern Indian state.
By defending the "hermeneutic practice" of new historicism
from Fredric Jameson, Karen Newman may teasingly imply that hers too is a new historicist methodology, but this nomination undersells her book.
The fundamental element linking poststructuralism, New Historicism
, and cultural studies has been an insistence on moral skepticism, a nonjudgmental and relativistic conception of ethics intended to undermine traditional Western values.