The Columbia Dictionary Of Modern Literary And Cultural Criticism

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Times Literary Supplement

Current talk about culture as a whole and literature in particular uses a new vocabulary. Some words are new (e.g. ''gynocritics,'' Elaine Showalter's 1979 neologism describing her feminist criticism). Other words are old-but with new meanings (jouissance for Roland Barthes is the explosion of language freed from meaning, for Helene Cixous it is what characterizes ''feminine'' writing, for Lacan it's something else again). For those who have occasionally felt lost, The Columbia Dictionary of Modern Literary and Cultural Criticism edited by Joseph Childers and Gary Hentzi, elucidates not only the terms but also those who give rise to them like the Birmingham Center for Contemporary Cultural Studies, the Tel Quel Group and the Geneva, Chicago and Frankfurt schools.

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Editorial Reviews

Times Literary Supplement
The organization of the Dictionary is genuinely helpful, including as it does short bibliographies for some of the heavyweight entries, pronunciation guides for others and careful cross-references throughout. The entries themselves are lucid, reliable, and often scrupulous in distinguishing various senses of the same term used in different intellectual traditions.
A welcome guide for the uninitiated to the complex vocabulary of theoretical argument in the arts and humanities, expanding the range of the numerous dictionaries of literary theory by devoting significant attention to the field of cultural criticism. Some 450 alphabetical entries succinctly and accessibly cover the most commonly used theoretical expressions in a wide range of fields including film, psychoanalysis, linguistics, media studies, and philosophy. Will also serve to jog the memory of even the most erudite. Extensive bibliography. Paper edition (07243-0), $19.50. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780231072427
  • Publisher: Columbia University
  • Publication date: 3/1/1995
  • Pages: 378
  • Product dimensions: 1.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 6.00 (d)

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