David Carter

Literary Theory

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    Оксана Гончароваhas quoted4 years ago
    This culture was to be a bulwark against the chaotic life of the working class and the illusions by which middle-class Protestants lived. Through culture it was possible to be free from fanaticism and move towards an existence of sweetness and light
    Оксана Гончароваhas quoted4 years ago
    Arnold famously defined culture as ‘the best that has been thought and said in the world’
    Оксана Гончароваhas quoted4 years ago
    In the words of Professor Morris Zapp in David Lodge’s novel Small World, which satirises literary scholars, ‘Every decoding is another encoding.’
    Оксана Гончароваhas quoted4 years ago
    The philosopher Karl Popper coined the very useful concept of ‘falsifiability’ to refer to a characteristic any theory must have if it is to be considered truly scientific.
    Оксана Гончароваhas quoted4 years ago
    Basically, to be truly scientific, a theory must be ‘falsifiable.’That is to say that it must be so formulated that it must be possible to predict under what circumstances it could be proven false
    Оксана Гончароваhas quoted4 years ago
    A clear example of a pseudo-science, in other words a pseudo-theory, is astrology. It is obviously not possible to prove or disprove the influence of heavenly bodies on the fates of human beings. The fact that astrology is not falsifiable, of course, only encourages many to believe in it!
    Оксана Гончароваhas quoted4 years ago
    This all leads to an inevitable conclusion: that literature is what a given society at a given time considers it to be.
    Оксана Гончароваhas quoted4 years ago
    Jonathan Culler, an eminent populariser of literary
    Оксана Гончароваhas quoted4 years ago
    So the answer to the question ‘Why theory?’ is quite simple: because it is better and more honest to be aware of the reasons why you do something than to be ignorant of them
    Оксана Гончароваhas quoted4 years ago
    Quite simply because there is ‘live theory’ (theory we consciously consider when making judgements) and ‘dead theory’ (the theory which lies behind the assumptions we hold when making judgements but which has become so integrated into our common practice that we are no longer aware of it).
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