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This is a two-semester course designed to give students a grounding in the theoretical bases underlying the study of literature and culture. This course provides a comprehensive overview of a number of theories and theorists who have influenced, in a striking way, various schools of thought. The first semester takes a diachronic approach, looking at the main critical schools and texts in the history of literary criticism and focusing on developments in literary theory in the twentieth century. The second semester employs a synchronic technique to examine the range of current theoretical approaches to the study of culture. In both semesters the stress is on the application of theory, with students being required to examine particular texts (of all kinds, including visual and film texts) in the light of the theoretical approaches under consideration.
At the end of the course, students will be able to discuss those literary and critical theories with greater sensitivity and appreciation, and will have an understanding of the contexts from which those theories arose as well as situations in which they can be aptly applied.
This is a two-semester course designed to give students a grounding in the theoretical bases underlying the study of literature and culture. The first semester takes a diachronic approach, looking at the main critical schools and texts in the history of literary criticism and focusing on developments in literary and cultural theory in the twentieth century. The second semester employs a synchronic technique to examine the range of current theoretical approaches to the study of culture. In both semesters the stress is on the application of theory, with students being required to examine particular texts (of all kinds, including visual and film texts) in the light of the theoretical approaches under consideration.Topics covered in this semester are the following:
Oral and Written Literature; Oral and Technological Cultures
18th and 19th century British literary criticism
Concepts of Art, Literature and the Idea of Authorship; The Shifting Author
Rationalist and Cartesian Philosophy, Text, and Ideology
German Aesthetic Philosophy: from Kant to Nietzsche
Critical theory, the Frankfurt School, British and French cultural studies
Cultural evolution, anthropological notions of culture
The beginnings of structuralism: Linguistics, sociology, anthropology
Psychoanalytic Theory I: Sigmund Freud
Psychoanalytic Theory II: Jacques Lacan and Carl Jung
Russian Formalism and Early Structuralism: Shklovsky, Jakobson, Bakhtin, Prague School, structuralism, theatre semiotics
Semiotics: Peirce, de Saussure
HAWKES, Terence. Structuralism & semiotics. Berkeley, Calif.: University of California Press, 1977. 192 s. ISBN 0-520-03422-8. info
Structuralism :an introduction. Edited by David Robey. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1973. 153 p. ISBN 0-19-874017-4. info
BARTHES, Roland. A Barthes reader. Edited by Susan Sontag. New York: Hill and Wang, 1982. xxxviii, 4. ISBN 0-8090-2815-8. info
Roman Jakobson's approach to language :phenomenological structuralism. Edited by Elmar Holenstein, Translated by Catherine Schelbert - Tarcisius Schelb. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1976. viii, 215. ISBN 0-253-35018-2. info
STRIEDTER, Jurij. Literary structure, evolution, and value :russian formalism and czech structuralism reconsidered. Translated by Matthew Gurewitsch. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1989. 317 s. ISBN 0-674-53653-3. info
FOKKEMA, Douwe Wessel and Elrud KUNNE-IBSCH. Theories of literature in the twentieth century :structuralism, Marxism, aesthetics of reception, semiotics. London: C. Hurst & Company, 1977. xii, 219 s. ISBN 0-905838-09-2. info
BARTHES, Roland. S/Z :[an essay]. Translated by Richard Miller. 1st American ed. New York: Hill and Wang, 1974. xi, 271 s. ISBN 0-374-52167-0. info
ONG, Walter J. Orality and literacy :the technologizing of the word. London: Routledge, 1991. x, 201 p. ISBN 0-416-71370-X. info
SUS, Oleg. From the pre-history of Czech structuralism : F.X. Šalda, T.G. Masaryk, and the genesis of symbolist aesthetics and poetics in Bohemia. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 1982. S. ,. info
MERLEAU-PONTY, Maurice, Claude LÉVI-STRAUSS and Roland BARTHES. Chvála moudrosti. Translated by Oldřich Kuba. Bratislava: Archa, 1994. 99 s. ISBN 80-7115-077-0. info
Weekly lecture series (1 1/2 hours), with individual lectures given by different speakers.
Assessment is based on the following. 1) A written credit test (objective) that focuses on the assigned readings for the course. The test is marked pass/fail. 2) For those who pass the credit test, there is an oral exam where is student is examined by two randomly-selected lecturers.