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Theories of Reading: Books, Bodies, and Bibliomania
by Karin Littau
Why do literary theorists see reading as an act of dispassionate textual analysis and meaning production, when historical evidence shows that readers have often read excessively, obsessively, and for sensory stimulation? Posing these and other questions, this is the first major work to bring insights from book history to bear on literary history and theory. In so doing, th ...more
Hardcover, 194 pages
Published October 1st 2006 by Polity Press
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While I was simultaneously worried the territory of this book was dangerously close to my dissertation, I had also hoped this would be more provocative than it was. Littau provides a self-described "sweeping meta-narrative" of the history of reading (specifically focusing on his history of literary criticism in re: reading), and does a great job culling sources from a variety of schools and academic persuasions. The survey the book offers in this regard makes it well-worth reading from the start ...more