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Literary Criticism

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Richard Kreinbring

on 7 January 2018

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Transcript of Literary Criticism

When analyzing this piece of literature through reader-response criticism, the thoughts of every reader count and discussion of these thoughts should be facilitated to determine value of the
Lessons taught by Little Red Riding Hood
Obedience to parents- " 'As long as I live, I will never leave the path by myself to run into the wood, when my mother has forbidden me to do so.'"
Don't talk to strangers
Critical Thinking

In another version of "Little Red Riding Hood" the little girl gets into bed with the wolf. The wolf is a metaphor for men who are cunning, tricksy, and are willing to lie to girls to convince them to trust them, and in some cases, like this one, get them in bed, as the wolf does with Little Red Riding Hood.
Little Red Riding Hood: The story of Little Red Riding Hood is the symbol of the struggle between art and practicality. Little Riding Hood is the symbol for beauty, the wolf symbolizes practicality. The wolf eats Little Red and her grandma which is corruption devouring beauty. The describing of the wolf(his eyes, his teeth,his ears)shows the judgment of beauty. Aesthetic critics view practicability as inartistic and without true beauty. Their views are an opposition to conformity of an art in their day. Little Red conveys purity. The wolf's hunger is people's desire to mask true beauty. It is viewed as nature for the wolf to want to eat Little Red. The wolf is a corruption of real beauty and art. The wolf poses as Little Red's grandma which means that corruption poses as art, but then it will devour beauty when approached by it.
History: Originated around 1860s to the 1900s. The movement started with a radical group of artists and designers who wanted to reform the current area of art by defying the current art standards. They wanted to escape from the ugliness and materialism of the Victorian Era by creating a new kind of art and beauty.
Definition: an exaggerated devotion to art, music, or poetry with indifference to practical matters.
Literary Critical Theory
Moral Criticism, Dramatic Construction
Formalism, New Criticism, Neo-Aristotelian Criticism

Psychoanalytic Criticism,

Jungian Criticism

Freudian Criticism
Marxist Criticism

Reader-Response Criticism
New Historicism/Cultural Studies
Queer/Gender Crictcism
Post-Colonial Criticism
Feminist Criticism
Eco Criticism
Darwinian Criticism
You and a partner will choose a school of thought and research it.. Share your findings here. Create a graphic representation of all of the following:

Definition, history and description of the tenants of the school/theory
Advantages and shortcomings of the theory
Prominent teachers, thinkers in the school
Finally you will apply your theory to a common story, “Little Red Riding Hood” which you will use to teach the class.
Jungian Theory
- The structuralist school emerges from theories of language and linguistics, and it looks for overlying elements in culture and literature that can be connected so that critics can develop general conclusions about the individual works and the systems from which they emerge.

Semiotics focuses on a nonlinguistic object or behavior that can be analyzed as if it were a language.
-The origins of structuralism can be attributed to the work of Ferdinand de Saussure on linguistics, along with that of the Prague and Moscow schools. Throughout the 1940s and 1950s, existentialism, such as that propounded by Jean-Paul Sartre, was the dominant European intellectual movement.
DEFINITION: A subgroup of psychoanalytical approach to psychology, it assumes that all stories and symbols are based on mythic models from mankind’s past.






Little Red Riding Hood:
Queer/Gender Criticism
Queer theory has slowly become more prevalant
in American culture, and within the school of thought community. Starting in the early 1980's and 1990's, queer theory and gender criticism has really taken off as a way to anaylyze activism and literature. as it revolves around personal identity. The community is mostly made up of women, and also the founders of this school of thought were women. The founders believe gay culture to be an independent culture, and is based on the history of the 80's and 90's. The founders believe that male and females are grouped into gay/straight, rather than male/female. Feminism has helped to shape this, as homosexual women were able to make themselves a distinct group, rather than among women and men independently.
Marxist Criticism
Definition: The analysis of the mind of the author through the characters and their actions in the story using Freudian psychoanalytic techniques.
Marxism is criticism of a piece of literature based upon how it displays both class strugles as well as how the literaure portrays the social climate the writer/speaker is living in. Marxists believe that collective consciousness doesn’t affect society, rather society affects the collective consciousness, and through this literary works provide insight into class struggles through time.
The philosophy was developed based upon Karl Marx’s economic belifs which led to the analysis of the portrayal of social class struggles within literature all throughout time.
Prominent Thinkers: Sigmund Freud
A critical approach to literature that examines the views of the reader and the way a piece of literature is read, rather than focusing on the writer.
Queer theory and gender criticism explore sexuality,
power, as well as marginal population in culture and literature.
Jung theorized the idea of
collective unconsciousness
, which is the memory of the human species collectively. These memories are grouped into
, which are ideas based on past experiences which shape one’s perception of the world. Through this, Jung believed that the goal of every human is to be aware of who they are, including their unconscious self. This state of realization is called
Writers Influenced
Jung was a student of Sigmund Freud and his Freudian school of thought. They eventually began to argue about psychoanalytical theory. Jung agreed with the dream portions and interpretations of Freud’s theories, but disagreed with his theories of unconsciousness, as so developed his own.
Richard Wright,
Claude McKay,
Jean Paul Sartre,
Simone de Beauvoir,
James Joyce
Darwinian Criticism
Alfred Adler
Karen Horney
Freudian Psychoanalytics
Moral Criticism
Definition: the larger purpose of literature is to teach morality and to prone philosophical issues.
History: Moral criticism started with the philosophies of Plato in the book, "The Republic". Aristotle continued this philosophy in his work, "Poetics." Moral criticism is the basis for many children's stories where in the end there is a moral for children to learn. Eventually moral criticism gave way to the newer idea of formalism which takes a more serious approach to literature in that such things as irony, paradox, imagery, etc.
Plato (insisted literature must exhibit moralism and utalitarianism)
Aristotle (didn't believe literature was art, but agreed with Plato that it must have a moral)
Matthew Arnold (argued works must have "high seriousness")
Horace (felt literature should be "delightful and instructive")
Literary Criticism
Little Red Proletariat
Definition - A type of cultural criticism, involving the analysis of literary texts produced in countries and cultures that have come under the control of European colonial powers at some point in their history.
1950s - Western intellectuals became interested in third world countries.
1970's - Idea of post colonialism was brought into American Universities.
Present Day - Plays a huge role in European Universities.
Hi again
How has a country's culture changed due to the colonization by another country?

To incorporate the subaltern voice into social studies.
Subaltern - a person who is socially, politically, or geographically outside of the majority.

Focus on the direct effects and aftermaths of colonization
Advantages: Allows literature to affect readers, instead of just being another form of art. Also provides a teaching tool for society for people to learn morals. Is also useful for criticizing works that have an obvious moral philosophy to them.
Advantages: The aesthetic critic could differentiate whether or not a peice of literature is art or corruption posing as art. Lets the artist to act freely and achieve the greatest amount of happiness.

Application of Semiotics
Advantages: Semiotics can be applied in not only literature, but in the symbols of religion, politics, nationality. It can be used in advertising; to sell a product. A company uses symbols that represent certain emotions, in an effort to sell their product to certain consumers.
branch of literary criticism that use concepts from evolutionary biology and the evolutionary human sciences to formulate principles of literary theory and interpret literary texts. In its simplest form, literary Darwinists identify basic, common human needs—survival, sex, and status—and using those categories to describe the behavior of characters depicted in literary texts.
Example of Semiotics
These images of a sloth and a dinosaur symbolize American ( The United States), politcal parties. The stars, along with the red, white and blue coloring, illustrate the idea of american, politics. These pictures are not only an animals, but they represent the morals and beliefs of a group of people. By simply, looking, at, the symbol, a person is easily able to recognize and understand, the feelings, behind the symbol.
Disadvantages: Creates a very critical view of literature. There is a lot of room for bias in this kind of criticism. The varying morals of different peoples and societies also make it hard to establish a moral standard, by which to criticize literature in this manner.

The reader is free to engage with the text the way he wants to, relate it to what he knows and has experienced, and analyze it the way he wishes, which leaves room for many interpretations.
Disadvantages: They see nature as curde which makes themselves crude for humans are part of nature. They don't associate morals with art, nor any other theme.
Prominent Teachers: Walter Pater- A college professor who introduced and influenced writers to the school of thought. Oscar Wilde who influenced the philosophy through his writings. Algernon Charles Swinburne also represented much of Britain.
Everyone gets a voice.
Colonized countries regain their culture as the independent country they once were.
People have integrated their culture with the colonizing culture
People have adjusted to the new culture
There is not just one "truth" that can be taken from a poem, novel, or story.
Leaves room for a lot of discussion about literature between two or more readers.
Edward Said
Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak
Dipesh Chakrabarty
Frantz Fanon
How Semiotics and Structuralism fit together
Symbols can mean different things, depending on where they occur in a piece of prime rib. This is how structuralism influences semiotics.This is clearly illustrated in Little Red Riding Hood. The symbols help to create the progression of the story and add emotion since each symbol has a certain connotation.
Prominent Thinkers:
Brian Boyd, Joseph Carroll, Ellen Dissanayake, Denis Dutton, Jonathan Gottschall
Reader response criticism makes interpretations highly opinionated which makes it difficult to compare different interpretations on the same piece.
Radical deconstructionism: questions categories of sexual orientations - if you ask a man to do house work, it questions what he's always though his job was, but doesn't actually change or challenge his gender or sexuality.
Radical subversion: disrupts the normalizing tendencies of the sexual order - if you dress up a man in a dress, and make him do women's work, it challenges whether the man should have been a man to begin with.
Tenants of the Theory:
The analogy of cultural change as to biological evolution leaves the human mind out of the picture entirely
Ideas, unlike genes, are not copied across generations and they don't mutate by blind, random processes
Prominent teachers and thinkers

view fiction as a means of exploring human nature
the people and events on display in fictive worlds presumably reflect our species' obsessions, and provide an ecologically valid source of data about what matters to us.
Luce Irigaray - Speculum of the Other Woman,
Hélène Cixous - "The Laugh of the Medussa,"
Laura Mulvey - "Visual Pleasure and Narrative
Cinema," 1975; "Afterthoughts on Visual Pleasure and Narrative
Cinema," 1981
Michele Foucault - The History of Sexuality,
Volume I, 1980
Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick - Epistemology
of the Closet, 1994
Lee Edelman - "Homographies,"
Allows each reader to freely interpret any work of literature.
Reader encouraged to question traditional theories of work.
Helps reader to look past the definitive ideas of binary opposition that are deemed natural and realize that these oppositions are in fact unnatural.
Post-Colonialism Criticism
Post-structuralism/deconstruction was originally introduced as a philosophical theory by the Frenchman Jacques Derrida, and was ironically misinterpreted by Western literary critics to apply to works of literature, in the mid to late 1960s. Derrida was influenced by the thoughts of Heidegger and Nietzsche, and disagreed with the concepts of the structuralists.
Represents the uniqueness in a human being. Usually depicted as who the person wants to grow into.
Represents the unconscious part of our psyche; it holds our hidden secrets and desires. This is what a human needs to understand to reach individuation.
Focuses on the analysis of literature of countries that have been colonized. Tries to negate the effects that the other country has on the culture of the country it colonized.
Represents the conscious part of our psyche; it is what we show to the people around us. This is what a human must break down to reach individuation.
Post-structuralism, also known as deconstruction, is a theory that denies structuralism’s idea of a simple truth. Post-structuralism/deconstructionism states that the reader often misinterprets the author’s intended meaning behind a piece.
History: Freud's psychoanalysis techniques developed around the beginning of the 20th century and applying his theories to literature followed very shortly after.
Little Red Ridinghood:
Followers/ Writers Influenced:
Michael Foucault
Roland Barthes
Jean Baudrillard
Helene Cixous
Paul de Man
J. Hillis Miller
Jacques Lacan
Barbara Johnson
Sigmund Freud
Tenets of Freudian Psychoanalysis:
Freud believed that the most important time in forming a person's psyche is their formative childhood years.
The characters are projections of the author's subconscious.
The author may be unaware of the ideas that he is projecting in his story, but the reader can use psychoanalysis to determine the underlying qualities of the author.
Tries to restore the same culture that was before the country was colonized. Everyone will get some say.
The thoughts of the author when writing these aren't taken into account, so the reader might be completely wrong about what the author's point is.

"Dear little boy who was loved by everyone...[wearing] a little riding hood of red velvet"

Here is a piece of cake and a bottle of wine; take them to your grandmother, she is ill and weak.

"A wolf met her, Red Riding Hood did not know what a wicked creature he was and was not at all afraid of him."

"'What big ears you have.' 'All the better to hear you with my child.'"

The hood represents her innocence. It serves to protect her from the outside world. The red symbolizes danger ahead and it is in contrast with the innocnece associated with the hood.

The cake and wine are contrasting elements. The cake symbolizes innocnece and the wine symbolizes a loss of innocence.

The wolf symbolizes danger and the reality of the real wrold, which Little Red Riding Hood has not experienced.

The wolf is disguised as the Grandmother. This symbolizes the wolf's hidden intentions and the hidden intentions that lie within the real world that Little Red has never experienced before.
Progression (Semiotics)

This is the first image of Little Red Riding Hood. Throughout the story she will eventually lose her innocnece and figuratively lose her hood.

The cake and wine serve to foreshadow what will happen to Little Red Riding Hood's innocence.

At the beginning of the novel, Little Red did not know anything about danger. Now she meets the wolf, and is losing her innoncence.

This is another step towards Little Red losing her innocen ce. The wolf continues to pretend to be something that he is not
Freudian psychoanalysis is not an exact science.
Knowing the thoughts of the author is difficult because thoughts are intangible.
Many of the conclusions drawn about the author are conjecture based.
It helps the reader to gain a greater insight into the mind of the author.
Through the understanding of the author, the reader can connect to the themes the author presents.
There exist many possible interpretations of the author's subconscious, which can lead to further discussion of the text and his purpose
The culture has already changed so much that it cannot go back. Also, some countries just have colonization integrated into themselves so deeply that if you peel away at it, there will be nothing left.
Applying it to Little Red Riding Hood
Little Red Riding Hood
Wolf - colonizing culture.
Grandma - the colonized third world culture.
Little Red Riding Hood - The people and how people are affected.
Huntsman - Liberator.
Little Red Riding Hood
Edward Said
Gaytri Chakravorty Spivak
Franz Ganon
This has been around since the beginning of literature, as readers naturally respond to what they are reading.
Post-Structuralism & Deconstruction:
These represent the inner personalities of the opposite gender (anima = femininity in men; animus = masculinity in women). It can either hurt or hinder the quest to individuation.
In the story, the authors make the wolf a cunning story teller and liar which allows him to commit evil acts.
As storytellers themselves, the Brothers Grimm seem to exhibit a contempt for the ability to spin tales as the wolf does, and so this can be interpreted as a kind of self hatred. Because the wolf uses his ability to trick and then eat the characters, the Grimm Brothers are subconsciously showing their desire to similarly act in a deceitful way.
Conversely, the Grimm Brothers include the huntsmen who rescues Little Red Riding Hood and her grandmother. This inclusion of a heroic act indicates their desire to be the ones to rescue someone in danger. However, the fact that they allow the characters to be eaten and then cut out of a stomach shows the dangers they would put someone in, just to be viewed as the hero.
Greek orators and rhetoricians are the real founders of this school of thought because they knew words could influence people and theorized on it.
Aims to reduce the effects that
colonization has on a countres
Advantage of Marxist Criticism
• Gives insight into the social institutions, political ideals, and economic circumstances of the time period in which the literature originated.

Disadvantage of Marxist Criticism
• Over-analysis of social class within a piece of literature may distract critics from its actual literary meaning.
Too complex and too specific, the theory was initially intended to function as a philosophical theory.
Truth and knowledge often become impossible, because they can be deconstructed.
Often inapplicable, as no one really knows the author's true intended meaning, aside from the author himself. Anyone else who claims to know the writing's purpose speaks on the behalf of the author, and may themselves be culprits of Post-Structuralism.
Since reader-response criticism is based on the reader's thoughts, and they are valuable, we will tell you what we think of it as the readers:
Little Red Riding Hood

The Wolf - Prime colonizer: eats or takes over/consumes colony (grandma) oppresses for self gain

Grandma - "Weak, third world countries people", who gets eaten (oppressed), no opinion

Red - Mild, opinionated person in "country" who sees through the oppressors "disguise." Displays the change of colonization, by changing her behaviors.

Hunter - Liberator, another First world country, who "comes to the aid" of this particular household.
It is obviously a children's story because of the unrealistic characters and their actions.
Within the beloved children’s story, Little Red Riding Hood, a dynamic struggle between the proletariat (working class) and the bourgeoisie (the rich ones) is developed through the wolf and the other characters. The story begins with the labor of Little Red in order to bring her ill grandmother some cakes in order to ease her sickness. Along her route, she enters the forest and encounters many distractions, including the wolf. The wolf, which represents the bourgeoisie through his consumption of the proletariats of the story, learns of Little Red’s plan and steals off in order to set up his plot. Seeing as how the wolf lives within the forest, which in turn distracts Little Red, it can be viewed as how the bourgeoisie will distract the proletariat class with various pleasures in order to further their own gains in the world. After the wolf consumes the proletariat in the form of the grandmother, his hunger is never sated, and he then consumes Little Red. The only way the grandmother and Little Red escape is through the labors of another proletariat in the form of the Hunter, who slays the wolf and releases the two from his belly. The overall concept of the story plays upon the idea that if left alone, the proletariat class will strive to take care of itself and the fellow members belonging to the class, whereas the bourgeoisie constantly strive to pit the proletariats against each other in order to further themselves in life.
This made us think that this story's purpose is to teach morals or life lessons to children, so we looked for them.
Two lessons that were clearly shown were: don't speak to strangers, and listen to your parents.
It teaches children the lessons with some explanation, so it is quite important for them. This story by itself is useless to adults.
Feminist criticism is a way for women to explore literature from their standpoint rather than in the terms of the patriarchal society they live in. Freudian concepts are sometimes incorporated into feminist criticism and it is closely related to queer and gender studies.
The history of feminist thought can be broken down roughly into three waves. First-wave feminism, from the 18th until the beginning of the 20th century, was a movement to liberate women legally, economically, and politically. Feminists of that period sought equal rights for women with respect to owning property, engaging in labor, protection from violence, and voting. The second wave of feminism began in the 1960s and lasted until about the 1990s. It focused on increasing economic opportunity for and ending social discrimination against women. It also sought to break traditional gender roles with more women working outside the home. The third wave started in the early 1990’s and is still taking place today, focused on reproductive rights, gay and transgender rights and the continuing economic inequality in the workplace.
The relationship between men and women has almost always been unequal and oppressive, and all known societies have been patriarchal. The major social institutions are based on male dominance in the economy, political system, family, and religion.
Feminist criticism allows a fresh look at literature from a matriarchal perspective, instead of the traditional patriarchal ideology of society.
Feminist criticism’s disadvantages stem from its exclusivity. It doesn’t look at all works of literature and its critics and thinkers are generally white women. The feminist movement itself also has many negative connotations associated with it.
Little Red Riding Hood:
In Little Red, in the beginning when she meets the wolf, the theory of radical deconstructionism is used. The reader may interpret that Little Red Riding Hood is a lesbian, or more manly than other girls, but isn’t positively not a girl. The reader may question Little Red Riding Hood and her feminism, and how her gender role should play out when in contact with a wolf.
When the wolf meets Little Red, and later moves to the grandmother, he isn’t acting like a male character. The wolf cares only to eat Little Red, and moves to the grandmothers where he impersonates a woman twice: once as Little Red, and then once as grandmother. This is an example of radical subversion, because the reader may question whether the wolf should be a boy or a girl, and question the wolf’s sexuality because he isn’t attempting to rape either the girl or the grandmother, and cares more about impersonating the women then eating them.
- Queer theory ignores the social and institutional conditions within which lesbians and gays live.
- Queer theory cannot be a framework for examining selves or subjectivities—including those that grow by race and class—but instead restricts its analytic focus to discourse.
- Queer/Gender theory is not accurate within all races.
- The modern construction of the homosexual is not accurate.
Definition and Description of the Tenants: New Historicism/Cultural Studies declares that it is necessary to take into consideration the social and cultural context of the author at the time period a literary piece comes out. Some other things taken into consideration are the psychological background of the author and any books that may have influenced the author.
Also, New Historicism/Cultural Studies says that any criticism of a work is tainted by the own critic’s social structure and cultural background. Therefore, those that follow this type of criticism begin a critical reading by explaining their personal own background.

History: - It emerged in the 1970s and 1980s. It was found by Stephen Greenblatt. It opposed old historical background criticism. Old historical background criticism believed that literarture was a representation and reflection of the historical background in which it was produced. It also concluded that history was stable, linear and recoverable. Therefore, it was all fact. However, New Historicism/Cultural studies concluded that historical narratives were subjective and that the cultural, social, political, anthropological discourses at work in any given age are also part of history as wellc’s social structure and cultural background. Therefore, those that follow this type of criticism begin a critical reading by explaining their personal own background.
Overall, this critical theory believes that any work is corrupted by the author’s background and the reader’s as well. Therefore, all literary work is biased.

New Historicism/Cultural Studies also opposed the view of New Criticism which was a movement that was prominent in the 1940s-1950s. It countered the idea from New Criticism that stated when studying text historical and biographical context was not necessary. Instead, New Historicism stated that there is no universal quality to literature and that literature results from specific historical events.

Prominant teachers:
•The founder was Stephen Greenblatt
•Michel Foucault influenced the critical theory as well.
•Other prominent people were Clifford Geertz, Louis Montrose, Catherine Gallagher, Jonathan Dollimore, and Jerome McCann.

•Critics can have author’s true influence and proceed to analyze or criticize with that point of view
•Avoids dense vocabulary and style
•There is historical evidence in its own voice

•Critics may fall into the author’s bias view depending on his or her credibility
•Analyzed texts approached by formalists and new criticists
•Assumes Marxist view of history is correct
•That history is a tale of power

•When little red riding hood gives her grandmother cake and wine to treat illness, it reflects the time of the 1800’s when alcohol consumption was very high. They didn’t consider it bad for health.
•When her mother gives Little Red Riding Hood specific instructions on how to behave, it reflects the etiquette of the time that girls must show proper manners towards the elderly.
•It isn’t strange in the 1800’s for a little girl to walk through the woods on her own. In contrast to now, when parent would take her in with a vehicle. Also, in Germany, where the Grimm brothers lived, it was common to take walks in the woods.
•The time period when the story was published, was during the Romantic Movement. This period of time placed emphasis on emotion, such as horror and terror and awe. “But just as he was going to fire at him, it occurred to him that the wolf might have devoured the grandmother, and that she might still be saved, so he did not fire, but took a pair of scissors, and began to cut open the stomach of the sleeping wolf”. This part of the story is very graphic and the fact that it is described like that, it seems more terrifying, especially for children. The movement before the Romantic Movement, The Enlightenment Movement, focused on rational thoughts rather than emotions. The wolf talking and eating two whole human beings is irrational. This shows how the two movements contrast each other.
A piece of literature means nothing without people
reading it, so the readers are very important in
determining the value of the literature.
English teachers around the world ask students to respond, as readers, to the literature they've read now.
Deconstruction is a theory in opposition to Structuralism’s "Binary Opposition." Binary Opposition is a system in language that juxtaposes two theoretical opposites that are strictly defined and counter one another. In structuralism, a Binary Opposition is seen as the principle organizer of human philosophy and language. However, Deconstruction attempts to remove any objective basis that may have occurred during Binary Opposition, claiming that we generally only recognize the concepts that we are taught to learn, so that we have a very limited viewpoint of the world at any given time. According to the theory, the only proper way to understand a work's meaning is to deconstruct the assumptions that produce the illusion of singular meaning. Deconstruction suggests that a text has multiple contradictory meanings.
Little Little Red Riding Hood portarys women as weak and helpless obejcts who are controlled by men. Feminsts want to break the mindset that Little Red Riding protrays.
Emma Goldman

Charollte Perkins

Audre Lorde
New Historicism/Cultural Studies
became a spokesperson on topics such as women’s perspectives on work, dress reform, and family. Wrote many short stories on feminism (The Yellow Wallpaper
heralded as a founder of anarcha-feminism, which challenges patriarchy as a hierarchy to be resisted alongside state power and class divisions
Represented the African-American voice in feminism .
Darwinian Criticism looks to explore the relationship between literature and the evolution of species, particularly humans. This basically comes in the form of natural selection being displayed and only the most suitable surviving, although darwinists may highlight needs as well.
Charles Darwin first established the idea of evolution and natural selection in 1859 in his paper On the Origin of Species. This theory has since been made famous and been applied to many fields of study, including the field of literary criticism. This type of criticism arose between the 70's and 80's due to dissatisfaction with the poststructuralist and postmodernist philosophies that were prevalent in literary study during the 1970s and 1980s. In particular, the Darwinists took issue with the argument that discourse constructs reality and thus made their own school of literary crticism
Post-Structuralism/Deconstruction Example:
Time (noun) flies (verb) like an arrow (adverb clause) = Time passes quickly.
Time (verb) flies (object) like an arrow (adverb clause) = Get out your stopwatch and time the speed of flies just as you would time an arrow's flight.
Here is a prime example of Post-Structuralism/Deconstruction. The sentences above have two completely separate meanings, yet are the same sentence. Post-Structuralists assert that if we cannot trust language systems to convey truth, the very bases of truth are unreliable and the universe which we have constructed becomes unraveled and de-centered.
Analysis of Little Red Riding Hood:
From a Darwinian standpoitn, the story Little Red Riding Hood seems to emphasize who would make a more suitable mate according to the culture at the time, the sly and intelligent wolf or the brave and more brutish axe-weilding woodsman. If the story is interpretted from this perspective, Little Red Riding Hood isn't holding onto a basket of baked goods, but rather the right to survive and continue one's lineage. According to the story, the most suitable mate in that particular time period and culture is the axeman, who displays his strength and valiance by killing the wolf, the more intelligent yet less suitable mate.
"Once upon a time there was a dear little (1) girl who was loved (2) by everyone who looked at her, but most of all by her grandmother, and there was nothing that she would not have given to the child. Once she gave her a little riding hood of red velvet, which suited her so well that she would never wear anything else (3) ; so she was always called 'Little Red Riding Hood.'" (The Brothers Grimm)

1. The word “little” in this sentence could be interpreted a number of different ways. For instance, it could refer to the girl’s age, which is generally assumed to be the Brothers Grimm’s intended meaning, or it could refer to her size, saying that she’s short or skinny, etc.

2. This doesn’t classify how much each person loved her or why they loved her – was it for her personality, or her looks, or a combination? Did they love her because she seemed adorable and sweet, or did they love her because she was a wonderful person who did great things?

3. This could be interpreted as meaning that she constantly wore the hood, along with other articles of clothing, or that the hood was all she ever wore.
By analyzing the author(s), a reader can better understand the origins of the literary work.
Understanding the psychological components of the work help us understand who we are.
This theory can apply to any literary work.
Jung never tested his theory, so never gathered hard evindence for its validity.
Although it is possilbe, it is difficult to analyze non-fictional literary works with this theory, because it revolves around metaphors.
Prominent theorists:
Stanley Fish
David Bleich
Michael Steig
Walter Statoff
Jeffrey Berman
Norman Holland
C.S. Lewis
They are either
or uniformists.
The thoughts of two readers are rarely similar due to the different experiences of each.
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