5 Matching Annotations
  1. Jun 2021
    1. On Deconstruction by Jonathan Culler

      I wouldn't recommend Culler's worthy book as a primer — it's more like an advanced read. One might actually do far better just reading wikipedia entries on a few critical theorists and theories, or maybe a book like Terry Eagleton's Literary Theory, which I might not agree with in places but can be an approachable starting place for someone new to critical theory.

  2. Jul 2016
    1. But the passage from de man does disservice to the discussion of close reading in one important respect. It makes it sound as though all you need is a negative disci-pline, a refusal to leap to the kind of paraphrases one has been led to expect, so that effective close reading requires no technique or training, only an avoidance of bad or dubious training. The suggestion seems to be that if one strips away these bad habits and simply encounters the text, without preconceptions, close reading will occur. If, as de man puts it, you are “attentive” and “honest,” close reading “cannot fail to respond to structures of language” that most literary education strives “to keep hidden.” atten-tion is important but not, alas, enough. Readers can always fail to respond—though then de man might not want to dignify the practice with the name of reading.

      Discussion of the methodological difficulties involved in close reading: i.e. there is no such thing as "just reading."

    2. Culler, Jonathan. 2010. “The Closeness of Close Reading.” ADE Bulletin, 20–25. doi:10.1632/ade.149.20.

    3. Distant Reading: Performance, Readership, and Consumption in Contempo-rary Poetry, Peter middleton calls close reading “our contemporary term for a hetero-geneous and largely unorganized set of practices and assumptions”

      Discussion of the methodology of close reading: middleton, Peter. Distant Reading: Performance, Readership, and Consumption in Contemporary Poetry. Tuscaloosa: U of alabama P, 2005. Print.

    1. p. 6

      Retrieval methods designed for small databases decline rapidly in effectiveness as collections grow...

      This is an interesting point that is missed in the Distant reading controversies: its all very well to say that you prefer close reading, but close reading doesn't scale--or rather the methodologies used to decide what to close read were developed when big data didn't exist. How to you combine that when you can read everything. I.e. You close read Dickins because he's what survived the 19th C as being worth reading. But now, if we could recover everything from the 19th C how do you justify methodologically not looking more widely?