Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. According to Foucault, what form of communication had power over social ideals?

2. Interpretation is important in language because it can affect ______________.

3. In Chapter 3, from what form of culture is pop culture developed?

4. What was Richard Rorty's area of expertise?

5. Focault warned the masses to be wary of _________.

Short Essay Questions

1. According to Chapter 3, how have cultural studies expanded the literary canon?

2. What types of writing topics have been used to create literary theory and why?

3. According to Chapter 2, what style and subject make up literature?

4. According to the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, what does language determine?

5. Does pop culture change the relevance of classical literature?

6. According to Rousseau's argument, what does writing have the power to clarify?

7. What does literary theory work to uncover, according to Chapter 1?

8. Why is theory a difficult subject from which to obtain an absolute, according to Culler?

9. Compare the approach used by theorists when analyzing cultural studies versus literary theory.

10. According to Chapter 4, "Meaning and Interpretation," what does society have to do with the understanding of words?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Literary performatives shape the words and phrases used in literature and conversation. Write a brief essay supporting or refuting the following statement, citing examples from the text to support your theory: Literary performatives have the power to change the way society communicates.

Essay Topic 2

Much English literature sought to control the masses and instill a sense of national pride. Create an argument for or against the following topic, citing specific examples from the text: Although literature sought to control the masses, this technique often backfired. Literature allowed the lower class to understand the difference in the class system. This instilled a desire for the lower class to obtain the same lifestyle as the upper class.

Essay Topic 3

Literary theory is made up of works that strive to have an effect that stems beyond the basic story. Identify three examples of literary works that strove to be a part of literary theory. Determine whether or not this objective was achieved, citing examples from the text.

(see the answer keys)

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