This is sort of meant to be a rec thread but I also intend it to have a broader scope, similar to some of the history threads you see on this board. Post books like pic related that provide some kind of interesting criticism on literature or art in general. You don't even necessarily have to agree with them (I don't necessarily agree with everything Pound says), just post something that you think offers new perspectives or interesting elucidations on the subject of good and bad art. I'm particularly fond of books written by people who are artists themselves, but again, anything you find interesting goes.
Another example of a book I found interesting, albeit removed from a more "standard" form of criticism.
Baudelaire's essays are good. In french they're collected as something like "On Romanticism" but I think they have some other title in the english editions. Lots of stuff about Edgar Allan Poe
if you really want to go back to the basics:https://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/7409/pg7409-images.html
>>22075118This and Anatomy of Criticism are probably part of why this board is so retarded when it comes to criticism and they think it is academic masturbation. Good books but if you are not well versed in criticism they are probably not going to do much for you. Anyways, picrel. And Italo Calvino's The Written World and the Unwritten World finally got reprinted this year, quite good especially if you want to learn more about Italian lit.
Are there any recs with the no bullshit approach Ezra Pound seems to work with? He even wrote the essays with no point of reference, using only his memory.
>>22075090I have a few tomes on the subject, but I would place them in the general broad category of aestheticsHegel - Introductory Lectures On AestheticsWinckelmann - Reflections...Walter Pater - The Renaissance..point me where to start
>>22076046You probably just want to read authors being literature nerds and not criticism proper, so start reading the essays of authors you like and enjoy.
>>22076113Books with titles like Mimesis or Illuminations make me sick to my stomach. I genuinely can no longer fathom pedantry and academic scratching n sniffingBooks for this feel?
>>22076133A book exploring the literary idea of Mimesis being titled Mimesis is a fairly sensible choice since there is no other word which can replace it and it is difficult to sum up in a concise way suitable for a book title. Anyways, you seem like the sort who needs to start with the Greeks and have their hand held all the way to the present, so picrel.
>>22076133House of Leaves- it drives the mtherfucker INSANE
>>22076172Is this book actually of any use? I like the idea of having a compendium of theory/criticism in one volume but the more I think about it the more it just sounds like a reference book that is completely useless outside of a very specific focus.
>>22076172You should rather acquaint yourself with the "literary" "Idea" of READING LITERATURE instead of reading about it.
>>22076230It is useful but it is a huge amount of information and for most it is better as a reference book, which is very useful if you are reading criticism. Considering that the first edition can be had used for like $10 I find it difficult to justify not having it if you have any interest in criticism even if all you use it for is reading an essay at random a few time times a year. >>22076233You should rather acquaint yourself with the "literary" "idea" of READING LITERATURE instead of memeing about it.
>>22076233If more anons read and discussed criticism, the board would be much better. It’s nothing but shallow opinions and using books as an aesthetic to describe oneself. Tumblrinas the lot of them
I've been reading this. It's interesting and pretty short.
>>22075090What’s a good way to study rhetorical concepts aside from source texts?
>>22077838Not OP but probably just look at the classics in Structuralism.
>>22075090Pic related. Has to be one of the greatest studies of the nature of drama ever written. And the clarity of method in the aesthetic criticism, if not in the prose, changed how I viewed art totally. But it would be much easier to understand if you first read the two preceding Zurich writings, Art and Revolution and The Artwork of the Future, to introduce you to his sensibilities and orientation, as well as later writings like German Art and German Policy, Beethoven, The Destiny of Opera, Actors and Singers etc. which build on and clarify the ideas in it.
>>22076233I don't know where people get this idea that you must pick one or the other. Many great authors read and wrote their own works of criticism. You think just because some morons exclusively read theory and criticism that this means nobody who reads criticism reads the literature being critiqued?
>>22075823Every aspiring writer could do by starting with pic related.
Book with criticism and analysis, but I strongly recommend it. Easy to understand and straight to point; Gombrich's writing style is a mix of Tolstoy and Lenin while showing a deep knowledge of art and history.If you have some time and want to discover something new, read his essay about outdoor sculptures from this book and the one about Adolf Loos from the Essential Gombrich.**This book is so fucking great even the censors from my shithole country approved it. Think about it for a minute.**
>>22079740this looks so interesting. i've read his 'story of art' and i've got 'art and illusion' on my tbr. but this one is not on zlib, libgen, or internet archive. fuck. how is essential gombrich? i found that one on zlib.
>>22079740Been meaning to read Gombrich's stuff. Sounds like a pleasure to read so I'll be bumping him up to the top of my reading list.
>>22075946I think Mimesis is a way more inviting and thought-provoking book for a general reader than Finding a Form and Gass's abstract grouchy musings.
>>22079834Man, I tried to read Mimesis but it demands such a wide range of knowledge of the canon. Most of it is analysing French lit and a good chunk of it medieval.
>>22079740>>22079770Fuck! I made a mistake.The essay about Loos isn't from Essential Gombrich, but from the book Sense of order.
>>22079834>Gass's abstract grouchy musings.I don't think you have read Finding a Form or any of his essays, he is rarely grouchy or even negative, he celebrates language and literature and his essays are pretty much love letters to literature and all it means to him. He can certainly be abstract but he does not rely upon criticism much and writes as it as if it were fiction. Anyone with decent reading skills and a desire to understand can figure out most of his essays. If don't think you have read Mimesis either, I think you have just read one two many Gass memes.
>picrelbest single-volume critical introduction to shakespeare available. strongly recommend. simply indispensable. extensive critical discussion of all the plays, long index with further reading, recommended film versions, and recommended shakespeare editions.
>>22075090I'm surprised Guy Davenport doesn't get much love here. This, Finding a Form, and The Hunter Gracchus are masterpieces
Been meaning to read this one for awhile now but have yet to get around to it, just ordered a copy, looking forward to it.
>>22075090His Michelangelo one is great as well.
>>22080076Does Davenport have a work called Finding a Form or did you just slip Gass in between two of Davenport's works? Or perhaps actually mean Every Force Evolves a Form?
While not strictly criticism it lends itself very well to be read as criticism and is in general a fun and entertaining read.
For awhile now I have been thinking of doing regular criticism threads on /lit/ with the goal of getting the board better at reading and discussing literature but have failed to come up with a form that would work here. Best I have come up with is selecting a short story of under 5 pages, let anons respond and try and lead through into a deeper analysis but so many here seem to just shutdown and stop responding if you even suggest they do not understand fully. Anyone have any ideas? Is it even possible to change the tide when most of the boards thinks criticism is just stating what you liked and disliked about a piece and how well it conforms to prescription and their ideols?Leading by example seems the best way but do we have enough anons here willing to discuss a selected short work in depth on a regular basis?
>>22080150Fuck, I meant Every Force. Saw the discussion on Gass above and just mistyped
>>22077827Do you like this theme? Have you read other books on the same theme by different authors? Can you suggest a few titles?I'm asking because Rothko's art looks really interesting, but I could never see one of his paintings in person.
>>22080355I'm not sure what theme you're referring to but I'm not well-read in literary/art criticism. The only other I read was some essay collection by Camus a while ago, but I wasn't familiar enough with Rennaissance paintings to have any meaningful takeaways.I only came up on this book after going to a play about Rothko and wanting to hear more about his thoughts on art.
>>22080404Can you name a single work which explores style in the depth which it does and do so as effectively and efficiently? While Queneau was not writing a work of criticism he absolutely was engaged in the act of criticism when he wrote it.
Any fun books on narratology?
>>22080607you realize that Exercices de style was not the first book of its kind rightand that there are plenty of books that are just as stylistically experimental without limiting their surveys to a single sceneit’s a significant entry in the works of Queneau and of Oulipo as a whole yes but to call it criticism sounds a bit absurd
>>22080181hahaha dieser neger quenau gepostet ^________^
1) Nabokov: the greatest art & literary critics of the 20th century you will ever need to bother. A great writer, a good reader, a talented scholar. He reads widely, and care only for one thing in literature - which is style. He commented on almost every field of literature in existence: prose, poetry, drama. He is an agnostic and approach literature with a no-nonsense attitude, which is to say his comments is always absolutely impersonal and merciless, but by no means dry and practical. His attitude was somewhat influenced by Proust (read Proust's essays). Aside from the books in the picture you should also try "The Man From USSR and Other Plays" and "Nikolai Gogol", a book Nabokov wrote on the Russian writer Gogol published in 1941. His reading list (books and authors that he approves) is deep and true, so you shouldn't get bore soon. He's an agnostic.His opinion on authors can be divide into 3 category:- On older writer- On his contemporaries- On younger writersI agree with him on everything he said about older authors, almost everything about his contemporaries, and ignore his opinion on younger authors (but I still retain his standard when judging them).2) >Fun fact: C.S Lewis and Nabokov share quite a few similarities>Both were born around 1898-99, at the turn of the Century>Both reads alot as a young boy: CS Lewis would order books that he can't get in Ireland from stores in England while Nabokov had his father's library.>Both enrolls and study in Cambridge in 1918 (CS Lewis enters Cambridge in 1917 but had to interrupt his study to fight in WW1, then resumed his study in 1918, around the time Nabokov started studying there). Nabokov finish his study in 1922, CS Lewis in 1923.>Both have deep love and understanding of poetry. CS Lewis enjoys classic literature, legends and ancient epics, and have doubts about or just straight out ignore basically every literary movement of his time, absolutely unfamiliar with Proust and Kafka, and thinks that Ulysses was stupid. On the contrary, Nabokov was way more up to date, and barely ever cares about myth, folklores, legends or epics, even Russian ones (He did translate the anonymous epic "The Song of Igor's Campaign" to English", but that's about it).>Both teaches Literature in college.>Both believes that the act of writing a novel resembles the act of creation of God.>Both wrote a selective autobiography whose purpose is not to tell everything about the author's personal life, but rather to use details of their life to ponder on or to elucidate certain subjects. For CS Lewis, it was God, for Nabokov, it was Time (or the concept of Time).>Both wrote novels>Both love and admire Tolstoy , both reject Freud, and both didn't care much for Dostoevsky (all for different reasons).>Both love and admire Shakespeare>Both married to a Jewish woman and have very profound relaionship with her. Davidman was of Polish and Ukranian disapora origin, Vera was Russian.
Octavio Paz’ literary criticism is pure kino. Does anyone have any recs on contemporary English/American/French critics?>>22080607None are fun, but if you want to get into it you should read Gennette. I don’t know if this is the case for English, but it’s not hard to find narratology/structuralism “text-books” that nicely explain their theory without dumbing it down >>22082240His lectures on literature are the most idiotic things ever written about literature, would NOT recommend, read real literary critics —essayists— instead!
>>22082495>None are fun, but if you want to get into it you should read Gennette. I don’t know if this is the case for English, but it’s not hard to find narratology/structuralism “text-books” that nicely explain their theory without dumbing it downmeant for>>22081630
An exit-level thinker who elevated literary and linguistic analysis to deeper philosophical levels. I miss him every day
>>22081825>without limiting their surveys to a single sceneThat is what sets it apart and gives it its ability to cast such a wide net without sacrificing depth.>but to call it criticism sounds a bit absurdI never did, I said it could be read as criticism and he was engaged in the act of criticism when he created it. those are very different things than being criticism. The simple story offered at the start is his analytical method which he uses to explore style, fairly standard practice in criticism. But go ahead, wow us with your knowledge, so far all you have done is make vague hints about your greatness and throw about ad hom.
>>22080282>just stating what you liked and disliked about a piece
>>22080282Leading by example is the definitely the best approach. Start putting up your own critiques and ask for other's critiques on the same work. You could also join the reading clubs and critique on there. I'm sure plenty of people would chime in or at least find it informative.Serious critique requires serious background.Likes and dislikes are still a form of criticism, and if you're scoffing at that level of critique, then you will probably be disappointed. Highly unlikely /lit/ will start writing academic papers but I think there are a lot of people that would be willing to try and to learn.I realize the pessimism in your post is pragmatism for shit-posters and trolls but it comes-off as high ego. People critique at different levels and are capable of varying levels of depth; it's on you to be able to know when to engage and level your expectations. If you're looking for engagement and improvement, the cream of the crop is not where to look and what to expect.
>>22083199>You could also join the reading clubs and critique on there. I'm sure plenty of people would chime in or at least find it informative.That does not really work here, some certainly find it informative but it does not increase the discourse, which is why effort posters have largely given up, we want to discuss. >Serious critique requires serious background...I think I made it clear that is not what I am talking about, I plainly stated my intentions, to get the board better at reading and discussing literature so we can have more than just people saying yay or nay.>I realize the pessimism in your post is pragmatismIt is not pessimism, it is optimism, I believe most of /lit/ is capable and actually desires something more than memes and shitposting. If I was pessimistic I would not even bother.
>>22083004>That is what sets it apart and gives it its ability to cast such a wide net without sacrificing depth.sounds like an unfounded generalization about the other books of its kind but yeah okay let’s roll with that if you want>I said it could be read as criticism and he was engaged in the act of criticism when he created it. those are very different things than being criticism.mea culpa, but you still aren’t providing the key ingredient to all criticism: the presence of an argument. where is the argument in Exercices de style? your point about an “analytical method” doesn’t translate to criticism without an argument; on its own, it’s more like a survey or, if we really want to get abstract, thematic transformation within an extended musical work as for your little outburst at the end, it would do you some good to realize that not everyone on this site who disagrees with you will puff their chests at you and call you names. i didn’t do either of those things and certainly have no intention to
>>22083266Increasing depth would surely decrease discourse as people we need to take more time to think about responses. I feel like it's an either-or situation.I cannot speak on what does and doesn't work here as I have only become more active recently but I'm unsure why the reading clubs wouldn't work. There seem to be people interested in discussing the books in The Magic Mountain threads that I'm putting up. Perhaps you could speak on why it hasn't worked in the past or what specifically you have tried?I'm also unsure what you mean when you say critique needs to be more than "yay or nay." Could you elaborate?
This is a pretty good resource for art criticism. It's just a collection of primary source essays of art criticism over the 20th century.
>>22083330>the key ingredient to all criticism: the presence of an argumentAnon, that is not a requirement of criticism, a great deal of the field is nothing but comparison of how different authors accomplish similar goals, exploring the ideas, analyzing literature with different techniques just to see what we learn, etc. What argument is put forth in Mimesis? or is it not a work of criticism? He does not even establish an analytical framework that he is advocating for, just dives in. > it would do you some good to realize that not everyone on this site who disagrees with you will puff their chests at you and call you names. i didn’t do either of those things and certainly have no intention toYou assumed and continue to assume your knowledge to be truth and greater than mine despite your argument being based completely off of something I did not say and continue to show a lack of knowledge regarding the field.
Also Arthur Danto's works about the death of art and "the artworld" are really interesting. Essentially adding a stipulation to the idea that "art is whatever one calls art" in that it's really "art is whatever the Artworld calls art."His main target is Warhol's brillo boxes turning Duchamp's readymades on their head. Where Duchamp simply presented industrially produced objects as art, Warhol painstakingly recreated mass produced commodities such that they were indistinguishable from their supermarket counterparts.Don't necessarily agree, but he says at that point where the art world proved an ability to make anything "art," art ceased to be both practice and theory and was subsumed wholly by theory. The introduction of theory into art by impressionism's response to the camera finally tied itself off with Warhol's response to mass production of symbolic imagery in branding.Check out "Death of Art," "After the End of Art," and his essay "The Artworld." That'll take you from the 60s to the 21st century.
>>22082747Tell me more. What makes him exit-level?
>The first job of a critic is to describe what he has read. This is a lot more difficult than one might suspect.
>>22080282>but so many here seem to just shutdown and stop responding if you even suggest they do not understand fully.Critiquing the critiquers is a fundamental issue as you point out. It leads to shitposting, an unavoidable endgame in this environment.>Is it even possible to change the tide...?You are asking for skill set that is somewhat rare even on dedicated semi-professional writing sites.>>22083199>If you're looking for engagement and improvement, the cream of the crop is not where to look and what to expect.Wildly optimistic. I do acknowledge this as an answer. Doesn't inspire confidence though.Anyway, back to the OP...>willing to discuss a selected short work in depthTough to avoid googling for the "right" answer and essentially tossing around copypasta. Unless we do something off the wall, like fan-fiction? Or, do we rip a chapter from an accomplished but obscure writer maybe? Frederic Prokosch?
>>22083527>essentially tossing around copypastaPERFECT! Accidental genius.We have a wealth of copypasta to analyze and a fair amount of it has room for meaningful analyses. Most importantly they are short and have relevance; as a bonus we can also analyze how they were received and their effect overtime through the archives. It also do not hurt that it rubs /lit/'s nose in how far it has fallen.
>>22083556Well, perhaps I got over excited. Not sure we can analyze pasta without it being seen as meme and autism. Interesting challenge though, will have to dig through some pasta and see if there are enough of them I can pull it off and have it translate well over to literature and not just become a meme. I will probably do it at least once just for fun and to see what results.
>>22083556>AccidentalBut of course! Go meta. Anything different is worth a shot in this environment. YOLO, in the current nomenclature.Mind you the Pomo Internet Defense Force wanker brigade though.
>>22083527>>22083556>>22083578I'm seriously missing why you couldn't post your own critiques on books or post critiques on book reading threads with people already invested in the material. I'm sure there are a couple bad apples who don't respond or aren't able to achieve the levels of depth you seek, but what exactly have you tried that has failed so poorly?Why pivot to copypastas? Surely you can't think that the board's literary criticism will be improved by analyzing copypastas? I thought this was a genuine conversation about improving the board but now I'm honestly not sure what you desire and feel as though I have wasted my time.
>>22083383>a great deal of the field is nothing but comparison of how different authors accomplish similar goals, exploring the ideas, analyzing literature with different techniques just to see what we learn, etc.yes, my friend, those are all techniques used to further one’s argument. even comparisons that exist without an explicit argument provide an implicit argument that the two items being compared are similar in some fashion>You assumed and continue to assume your knowledge to be truth and greater than minedon’t put words in my mouth>despite your argument being based completely off of something I did not sayit was based off what you did not say that could have lent even a shred of credence to what you did sayi’m done talking to you, don’t bother responding to me until you read what i wrote and figure out how not to frame it as some sort of personal offense
>>22083620>you>>22083556>>22083578Apparently one other poster. Perhaps this one will chime in?>>22083527Admittedly one particular other.>why you couldn't post your own critiquesBeen there; done that. Here on /lit/ from days long ago, and more so on an experimental breakaway /lit/ far, far away in both space and time.Like to think I learned a bit from that, admittedly jaded, experience.>Why pivot to copypastas?Having been solicited for ideas we're throwing them around.>not sure what you desire and feelHm. Perhaps the promise of what /lit/ was like pre-breakaway? And a bit before that too.Anyway, don't mistake my own touch of rueful humor for criticism.
>>22083582That is not meta, unless all criticism is meta. You are just making me feel like I have an even bigger hill to climb than I thought. To be meta you need to do more than break the fourth wall or make self references, you need to use that to introduce a new perspective on the whole which would otherwise not be there. Without that new perspective it is just a cheap trick and not the literary technique. >>22083620Criticism is not critique, critique only a tiny portion of what criticism is. I have done all you suggest in the past and still do those things on occasion, they do not increase the discourse and at most get me some (You)s but am generally ignored or kill the thread because people can't larp when there is someone who actually took the time to read and understand the work in question.As to why pasta I explained that but to elaborate on what I said in the previous post and in the preceding paragraph, it allows bringing in the entire field of criticism and not just the critique; it does not rely on any knowledge or resources greater than what most on 4chan already have, I can link to uses of the pasta over time and show how our relation to that pasta has changed over time and what that says about the board and its culture and how it is has changed over time, this is what criticism is actually about.>>22083664>implicit argumentHow does Queneau not provide that? He provides a way to analyze and understand style and then demonstrates that technique in an efficient effective way. Still waiting on you to provide these other better examples. >don’t put words in my mouthYou assumed you were correct and I was wrong, you did not even entertain the idea that you were not correct until you had no choice and not without playing it safe by pretending you were humoring me.>it was based off what you did not say that could have lent even a shred of credence to what you did saySo you were putting words into my mouth? Fuck off already, you have no idea what you are talking about and just trying to bluff your way through being "right."
>>22082240Good post, I'm glad there's still people like you on lit
>>22083360How does it compare to Norton's collection?
>>22084208Norton is an anthology of theory and criticism* of literature that is an anthology of art theory. OP stated art or literature so with have some fog.*I am assuming you are referring to the the Norton Anthology already referred to in this thread and not one of the other Norton Anthologies, which are also not of art but of literature, music or religion.
>>22084232Woops, didn't pay attention and misunderstood. Bear with me, I'm just about to head off to bed.
>>22084261It happens and you ignored my drunken typos/errors so you deserve some latitude. Don't let it happen again, pseud.
>>22083788i said not to respond to me until you don’t take my argument as a personal offenseclearly you didn’t respect thatbut yeah keep talking in circles about “cheap tricks” and “pastas” and how i’m “bluffing my way through being right” when i only brought up a point counter to yours lmfao, i’m sure that’s a great way to get people to discuss with you, you delusional fuck