Critical or Literary Theory

What is Literary criticism?

Don't ask, "What does it mean?" but instead, "How does it mean?"

for each of the theoretical approaches below, you'll find three catagories: Premise, Practice, Examples


What kind of thinking outside of literature led to this approach?


What kinds of questions do I ask a text when using this approach? What kind of thinking and tasks are involved?


Various examples of theory application with specific texts or assignments

Reader Response
New Criticism or Close Reading
Historicism and Biography

Other Resources

Works Cited
Appleman, Deborah. Critical Encounters in High School English. New York: Teachers College Press & NCTE. 2000. pp 163-4. Print.
Culler, Jonathan. Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction. London: Oxford University Press. 1997. Print.
Eagleton, Terry. Literary Theory: An Introduction. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. 2008. Print.
Eckert, Lisa Schade. How Does it Mean? Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann. 2006. Print.