The Limits Of Critique by Rita FelskiThe Limits Of Critique by Rita Felski

The Limits Of Critique

byRita Felski

Paperback | October 20, 2015

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Why must critics unmask and demystify literary works? Why do they believe that language is always withholding some truth, that the critic’s task is to reveal the unsaid or repressed? In this book, Rita Felski examines critique, the dominant form of interpretation in literary studies, and situates it as but one method among many, a method with strong allure—but also definite limits.

Felski argues that critique is a sensibility best captured by Paul Ricoeur’s phrase “the hermeneutics of suspicion.” She shows how this suspicion toward texts forecloses many potential readings while providing no guarantee of rigorous or radical thought. Instead, she suggests, literary scholars should try what she calls “postcritical reading”: rather than looking behind a text for hidden causes and motives, literary scholars should place themselves in front of it and reflect on what it suggests and makes possible.

By bringing critique down to earth and exploring new modes of interpretation, The Limits of Critique offers a fresh approach to the relationship between artistic works and the social world.
Rita Felski is the William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of English at the University of Virginia and the editor of New Literary History. She is the author of several books, including, most recently, Uses of Literature and Literature after Feminism, the latter also published by the University of Chicago Press.
Title:The Limits Of CritiqueFormat:PaperbackDimensions:240 pages, 8.5 × 5.5 × 0.7 inPublished:October 20, 2015Publisher:University of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022629403X

ISBN - 13:9780226294032


Table of Contents


1 The Stakes of Suspicion
2 Digging Down and Standing Back
3 An Inspector Calls
4 Crrritique
5 “Context Stinks!”

In Short

Editorial Reviews

"Felski suggests that authors, readers and critics are not the only actors involved in interpretation, there are non-humans, texts, journals, circulation systems, but moreover there are hermeneutics, theories and other techniques, including critique. Within this complex network, critique has its limitations, and there are numerous post-critical possibilities."