Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction - Chapter 1, What Is Theory? Summary & Analysis

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Chapter 1, What Is Theory? Summary and Analysis

The term theory

The word "theory" signals "speculation"; however, theory is much more than a guessing game. Speculation about an issue will ultimately be proven wrong or right. In concept, "theory" will not necessarily yield a definitive answer. A theory does not state the obvious; rather, it involves a measure of complexity especially in relations of a systematic nature. A true theory is not easily proved or refuted.

Philosopher Richard Rorty advanced the notion that the works of Goethe and Emerson, among others in the 19th century, created a new genre of literature that was dubbed in a general sense "theory." While Goethe wrote of the sad tale of unrequited love in The Sorrows of Young Werther, the story contains the underlying theory that life devoid of passion is meaningless. Literary theory is comprised of...

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This section contains 962 words
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Buy the Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction Study Guide
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