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Beginning theory: an introduction to literary and cultural theory

Beginning theory: an introduction to literary and cultural theory

Barry, Peter, 1947-

The new edition of 'Beginning Theory' features new chapters which take account of recent developments in literary theory. Beginning theory has been helping students navigate through the thickets of literary and cultural theory for well over a decade now. This new and expanded third edition continues to offer students and readers the best one-volume introduction to the field. The bewildering variety of approaches, theorists and technical language is lucidly and expertly unravelled. Unlike many books which assume certain positions about the critics and the theories they represent, Peter Barry allows readers to develop their own ideas once first principles and concepts have been grasped. The book has been updated and includes two new chapters, one of which (Literary theory - a history in ten events) innovatively surveys the course of theory, while the other (Theory after 'Theory') maps the arrival of new 'isms' since the second edition appeared in 2002. Liberal humanism - Structuralism - Post-structuralism and deconstruction - Postmodernism - Psychoanalytic criticism - Feminist criticism - Lesbian/gay criticism - Marxist criticism - New historicism and cultural materialism - Postcolonial criticism - Stylistics - Narratology - Ecocriticism - Presentism/Transversal poetics/New aestheticism/Historical formalism/Cognitive poetics

eBook, Electronic resource, Book. English. Electronic books.
3rd ed.
Published Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2008
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Statement of responsibility: Peter Barry
ISBN: 1847793991, 9781847793997
Note: Previous ed.: 2002.
Note: Formerly CIP.
Note: Includes bibliographical references and index.
Physical Description: xii, 338 p. : ill.
Subject: Higher & further education, tertiary education; Literary theory; Literature; Philosophy: epistemology & theory of knowledge; Literature Philosophy.; Criticism.; Cultural studies; Literature: history & criticism
Reproduction: Electronic reproduction. Askews and Holts. Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Other formats: Also available in printed form ISBN 9780719079276


  1. 1. Theory before 'Theory'
  2. Liberal humanism 2. Structuralism 3. Post-structuralism and deconstruction 4. Postmodernism 5. Psychoanalytic criticism 6. Feminist criticism 7. Lesbian/gay criticism 8. Marxist criticism 9. New historicism and cultural materialism 10. Postcolonial criticism 11. Stylistics 12. Narratology 13. Ecocriticism 14. Literary theory
  3. a history in ten events 15. Theory after 'Theory' Appendices Edgar Allan Poe: 'The Oval Portrait' Dylan Thomas: 'A Refusal to Mourn' William Cowper: 'The Castaway' Where do we go from here: Further reading