The persistence of practical criticism

Brown, Alan (1998) The persistence of practical criticism. PhD thesis, University of Gloucestershire.

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'The Persistence of Practical Criticism' explores modern 'literary' teaching practices and takes I.A. Richards' experiment in close reading as the fulcrum of its enquiries. It focuses on the psychologistic structure of the practical criticism exercise, and argues against the invasive implications of a literary pedagogy predicated on the analysis and correction of 'personal response'. The Introduction explores the present relation of English studies to the legacy of practical criticism. It engages the question of a 'post-literary' pedagogy, and advances a definition of the 'literary' from which a defence of the textual arts might be advanced. Chapter One looks at the pre-history of practical criticism and at conflicting accounts of the emergence of literary education. Chapter Two unravels the logic of Ricardian theory in its relation to language and psychology. Chapter Three engages the rhetorical force of Leavisian criticism m its translation of the Ricardian model of practical criticism, as 'criticism in practice'. Chapter Four analyses the teaching of practical criticism in the mid-century British schools system and addresses the 'double bind' implicit in examiners' demands for simultaneous and mutually exclusive displays of 'sincerity' and 'technical expertise' from students. Chapter Five follows the development of practical criticism in the model of 'close reading' evolved under New Criticism. The conclusion sets out an assessment of 'close reading' in relation to the persistence of practical criticism, and in terms of the mode of analysis adopted across this thesis .

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Thesis Advisors:
Thesis AdvisorEmailURL
Additional Information: A print copy of this thesis is available for reference use only.
Uncontrolled Keywords: English literature teaching; Leavisian criticism; Practical criticism; Close reading; Schools
Related URLs:
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1603 Secondary Education. High schools
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN0080 Criticism
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Education and Applied Sciences
Depositing User: Susan Turner
Date Deposited: 26 Jan 2022 16:18
Last Modified: 31 Aug 2023 08:43

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