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Marxism and Literary Criticism

3.89  ·  Rating Details ·  578 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews
Reprint 1983, Methuen. Slim 8vo. viii, 87pp. Near fine, clean tight sound square, no bookplate, inscriptions or marks of any kind, clean crisp corners and edges. In near fine colour pictorial paperback wrapper featuring pop art syle ink bottle to upper. Of interest to reader and scholar alike.
Paperback, Reprint, 88 pages
Published August 12th 1977 by Methuen & Co. Ltd
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May 03, 2014 Traveller rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-by-men
Very concise indeed. (I read it in almost a single sitting.) Pretty much concerned with form to the exclusion of almost anything else.

Eagleton looks at a quite a lot of Marxist critics, but he seems to relate to them in this book mainly as far as form is concerned, and this doesn't even mean just genre, but also form of production-- you know, literature or "text" as a form of production as in: is it written by a lone author and distributed by hand from a small press, or is it a mass- produced th
Momina Masood
I have some preconceived notions regarding books on theory, and there are things that I simply cannot help expecting from them. Clarity and communicability of thought might not be among them (you can’t ever get so lucky) but at least I expect some literary examples and their commentaries to go with the philosophy. It makes the theory way more accessible that way. Eagleton writes splendidly, considering especially that Marxism in itself is not an easy subject to tackle. He definitely does a good ...more
Apr 01, 2011 Ryan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Here is a concise introduction to the subject of reading socio-political "relevance" in books. Terry Eagleton surveyed the rise of Marxist literary critics and their ideas and philosophies. It began with a definition of basic concepts of Marxist lit theory (base and superstructure) and then proceeded toward a critique of early interpretations of the theory. The approach was academic and somehow lacking some specific examples. The presentation of arguments was interesting even though it mentioned ...more
Jan 25, 2010 Manuel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very good introduction to the different understandings of literature that have sprung from Marxism. Eagleton discusses the issue in four broad areas: the connection between literature and history, the issue of the form, the problem of political commitment for a Marxist approach to literature, and finally a Marxist analysis of the author as producer and literature as a process of production.

It made me want to read his Literary Theory book. It seems like he's always olny showing you the tip of the
Elliot Ratzman
What did Marx, Engels and Lenin think about art and literature? As if the secrets of the universe were hidden in their letters Marxist lit critics debate the contrary implications from the masters’ marginalia. Marx was crazy well-read; Lenin wrote essays about Tolstoy; Trotsky penned a whole book on literature (“We Marxists have always lived in tradition”). That being said, Eagleton’s mercifully short book is packed with dense details. Lacking the chronic wit and vivid examples of his later writ ...more
Adrian Astur Alvarez
This was a clear and lucid introduction to Terry Eagleton's discussion of Marxist theory. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in either thinker.
tom bomp
Decent summary of some strands of Marxist thought about literature. The last chapter, which is detailed and primarily about Brecht, is fascinating. Suffers from its length and its refusal to define what Marxist literary criticism *is* - it doesn't talk about anything past the Second World War, leaving a pretty huge gap. Refers often to what Marx/Engels/Lenin/Trotsky thought but doesn't really describe the details much at all. What he does describe leaves their thoughts sounding pretty basic - wh ...more
Sep 28, 2016 Frida rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I don't know if it was my fault or Eagleton's, but one thing he said towards the beginning of the book was that as a summar of Marxist Critisism it runs the risk of boring the people who are well veresed in the subject and confuse people who are new to it. I felt a bit confused. The text was rather dense, and sparse at the same time. I know that it is important to always say who thought of somthing, who the idea belongs to, but I think the continous references made the message these people were ...more
abhishek  Chakraborty
Although there are already lots of books written on Marxist literary criticism, but I personally do like the best Terry Eagleton's take on this theory for its efficacy in introducing all them nitty-gritty things essential for thorough understanding of Marxist criticism.The best thing about this book is that it assumes the reader having no prior knowledge so besides explaining literary jargons it also gives a condescend summary of the origin of Marxism and its aftermath not to mention the sucker ...more
آيا ماركس براي هزاره ي سوم سخن تازه اي درباره ي ادبيات و هنر دارد؟چرا بايد كار او را در اين زمينه جدي بگيريم؟آيا در ماركسيسم و نظريه ماركسيستي،نظريه ي واحدي درباره يادبيات و هنر وجود دارد؟
تري ايگلتون،در اين تحليل روشن ،شگفت آور و خوش خوان پاسخ هايي خواندني براي اين پرسش هاي اساسي فراهم مي آورد...شايد به جرئت بتوان اين كتاب فشرده را يكي از مهمترين آثار در زمينه ي تاريسخ نقد ادبي در سنت فلسفه و نظريه اجتماعي ماركسيستي از سده ي نوزدهم به اين سو دانست.
I mistook this book for Eagletons other book 'Marxist Literary Theory' and I have got to say, read that, not this short little overview that goes nowhere, give no details on anything, and is completely useless for anyone trying to understand the subject. It was just way to short to be of any real usefullness.

It raised way more questions than it did answers. It was like a teaser for his bigger more robust book on Marxist theory.
Walker (A Shropshire Girl)
Eagleton provides detailed footnotes and the short biography of each thinker is very valuable but easily missed. I think that dedicating a given theme to a chapter requires a conclusion at the end bringing it together. As an introduction it also misses out definitions and would be better served with a glossary. If you've already read a lot around Marxist literary criticisms then I'm not sure this would add much to your reading.
Luke Franklin
Oct 15, 2011 Luke Franklin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Succinct introduction that starts in broad strokes and becomes more refined as it moves through its main concepts, ending w/ Brecht and Benjamin (who w/ Macherey) are closest to Eagleton's heart. Wears pretty well despite its age (a mid-70s text), though the legwork on "ideology" and Marxism as a "science" at the outset are weak and dated, though partly due to the shortness of the text and those being problems that lay outside the main purview of the text.
Jeune Fille
Feb 25, 2015 Jeune Fille rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
younger terry really holdin' back, but if you already have a background on literary criticism and/or Marxism, this book is the right amount of concise. I particularly liked the "author as producer" chapter and found his analysis of Benjamin ON Brecht really helpful and insightful. I also liked the annotated bibliography at the end.
Benjamin Britton
Aug 19, 2013 Benjamin Britton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Marxist criticism is not just an alternative technique for interpreting Paradise Lost or Middlemarch. It is part of our liberation from oppression, and that is why it is worth discussing at book length."
Terry Eagleton
Matěj Bregant
Aug 19, 2016 Matěj Bregant rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everybody who wants to seize the means of production from the bourgoisie
It is a short, yet concise look at Marxist literary criticism and even if you aren't well versed in this area you will be able to understand a lot of the theory Eagleton is writing about. The chapter on Benjamin and Brecht is especially well written.
Cullen Brown
Dec 09, 2014 Cullen Brown rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For those looking for a quick reference book or introductory guide to Marxism, this book is sure to exceed expectations. For those looking for a robust, comprehensive treatment of a very complex topic, this book is sure to disappoint you and cause an early death. Looks like I am in the former camp.
Oct 20, 2016 Ned rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Terry Eagleton’s digestible, pamphlet size overview is adept at explaining the evolution of Marxist thinking about literature and less skillful at making the case for the necessity of using Marxism as a means of literary analysis.
Umut E. B. (Kareler ve Sayfalar)
"Marksist eleştiri, yalnızca Kayıp Cennet ya da Middlemarch'ı yorumlamak için alternatif bir teknik değildir. Baskıdan kurtuluşumuzun bir parçasıdır ve işte bu nedenle de bir kitap boyunca tartışmaya değerdir."
Terry Eagleton
Rahil Zabihi
Dec 01, 2015 Rahil Zabihi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: about-literature
Isn't he just amazing? I devoured the book and I think I will come back to it many times. It was much shorter than my expectations though. Just when I was feeling zealous of it, I figured the book is already finished and I'm on the Notes' section. :(
Oct 14, 2015 Runa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
What you see is what you get with this book, pretty much. I think Eagleton is a better writer than theoretician, but that's rarely a bad thing.
Oct 24, 2008 Eric rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing little piece about how to apply Marxist ideas and theory to the process of literary criticism.
It has to be said, Eagleton is a definite read.
Jul 12, 2011 Alex rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short and summary. (Summery too! The summer beach read of 2011.)
Jake Staples
Jul 13, 2016 Jake Staples rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A solid introduction to the Marxist lens of literary criticism and also a good discussion of ideas relating to other forms of art.
Nigel Pearce
This is a short and clear introduction to Marxist literary theory.
Ian rated it it was amazing
Jun 11, 2015
Şima İmşir
Şima İmşir rated it really liked it
Dec 12, 2015
Alen rated it liked it
Jun 11, 2012
Mike Murashige
Mike Murashige rated it liked it
Jun 14, 2009
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Widely regarded as Britain's most influential living literary critic & theorist, Dr Eagleton currently serves as Distinguished Prof. of English Literature at the Univ. of Lancaster & as Visiting Prof. at the Nat'l Univ. of Ireland, Galway. He was Thomas Warton Prof. of English Literature at the Univ. of Oxford ('92-01) & John Edward Taylor Prof. of English Literature at the Univ. of Ma ...more
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