This book examines how the practices of criticism establish a particular domain of knowledge, the truth of literature. As a discussion of the ideology and politics of literary knowledge, it concentrates on constitutive elements of its production: the intertextuality of writing, the mediatedness of understanding, the formative role of reading expectations, the enabling presence of relevant literacy, the conditioning horizon of expectations, and the economic character of axiology. The main argument advanced is that criticism, by constructing literature as an ethnic heritage and communal treasure, participated in the invention of a national identity necessary for the legitimization of the modern state.
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Year of Publication: 2014
Location: Princeton, NJ