For more than a decade literary criticism has been thought to be in a post-theory age. Despite this, the work of thinkers such as Derrida, Deleuze and Foucault and new writers such as Agamben and Ranciere continue to be central to literary studies. Literary Criticism in the 21st Century explores the explosion of new theoretical approaches that has seen a renaissance in theory and its importance in the institutional settings of the humanities today.
Literary Criticism in the 21st Century covers such issues as:
The institutional history of theory in the academy
The case against theory, from the 1970s to today
Critical reading, theory and the wider world
Keystone works in contemporary theory
New directions and theory's many futures
Written with an engagingly personal and accessible approach that brings theory vividly to life, this is a passionate defence of theory and its continuing relevance in the 21st century.
Vincent Leitch is George Lynn Cross Research Professor and Paul and Carol Daube Sutton Chair in English at the University of Oklahoma, USA. He is the author of American Literary Criticism Since the 1930s (2nd edition, 2010) and co-editor of The Norton Anthology of Literary Criticism and Theory (2nd edition, 2010).
Preface 1 What I believe and why 2 Antitheory 3 The tasks of critical reading 4 Theory today and tomorrow 5 Theory crossroads 6 French theory's second life 7 Second lives of Jacques Derrida 8 Postmodernism revisited 9 Twenty-first-century theory favorites 10 Theory futures Bibliography Index