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The Art of Literary Research

3.28  ·  Rating Details ·  58 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
For interested readers who have other vocational plans, its authors-experienced researchers themselves-provide an intimate view of the way professional scholars go about their specialized and challenging tasks.

This extensively revised Fourth Edition takes full account of recent developments that have virtually revolutionized certain important areas of the discipline. The c
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published September 17th 1992 by W. W. Norton & Company (first published 1964)
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Oct 15, 2011 Shanae rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Those this book is quite antiquated, I think the information it provides about doing in-depth research to acquire the most accurate information when taking on the challenge of assessing any text is essential to all English majors and academic writers. I learned quite a bit from Altick and am anxious to put it to good use later this year when I begin writing heavily researched essays.
Mary Cornelius
Dec 04, 2014 Mary Cornelius rated it really liked it
If only it was the art of historical research . . .
Dec 16, 2016 Pat rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone interested in literature
I have two editions of this book, and both are filled with interesting stories and useful info on doing literary research. Yes, we have digital databases, but Altick emphasizes that research doesn't consist of just "lookin' stuff up" on the computer. Research involves focus and creativity and an ability to extract information from unlikely sources and use it to find more information. Altick shows researchers doing just that.

No book can keep up with the new research tools available. This book is
Tyler Proctor
Aug 28, 2013 Tyler Proctor rated it did not like it
I will admit to just skimming it, but I was given a week to read it, and I gave it a fair chance. I know we shouldn't rely too much on technology, but this book (published in the 1960s) basically contained instructions on how to write a research paper if the internet died. It also repeated itself constantly (for basically the first 150 pages) while just giving tons of examples. The last section was kind of relevant, but I don't quite see how I would've made it to the upper-level college writing ...more
Scott Smith
Sep 07, 2010 Scott Smith rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This was written a few years back, before the internet. The views are and methods are pertinent for someone seeking to do research into a particular subject in literature but he makes the big mistake of assuming that the "art" of research is even worth it. He assumes his readers already accept that there is some noble mission in chaining yourself to a desk in the library to look into "eradicating error" in literature and never bothers to explain why someone would even want to. Anyway, it's all o ...more
Mar 15, 2009 Lenaya rated it it was ok
There is some really interesting information in here, but a lot of outdated research methods. It has been facinating to learn a little more about what exists in libraries and how to conduct a thorough investigation into original manuscripts and "edited" texts.
Jan 19, 2009 Cameron rated it liked it
This is the kind of book Lionel Trilling would have had buried with him. Stuffy? Absolutely. But even more useful, and the bits about literary Indiana Jones-esque finds of buried manuscripts in British attics are especially good.
Feb 15, 2014 Ruth rated it really liked it
Very informed and full of self-conscious irony. An excellent read if you're truly desperate to know about literary research and don't mind looking up arcane wordage.
Sep 24, 2008 Laura rated it really liked it
Recommended to Laura by: James Barcus
Shelves: schoolbooks
I was surprised at how easy this book was to read! It was actually entertaining and really made me think. Go figure.
Joe Nelis
Jul 27, 2012 Joe Nelis rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Definitely some useful information and interesting anecdotes here, but it's such a boring read. This was a struggle.
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807.2 A4681 1993
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Richard Altick was Regent’s Professor of English, Emeritus, at The Ohio State University and the author of numerous important works in the field of literary studies.
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“A scholar must not only be capable of hard, often totally resultless work - he must actually relish it.” 2 likes
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