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Books > Literature & Fiction > History & Criticism > Criticism & Theory > 0226310442
  1. Cultural Capital: The Problem of Literary Canon Formation
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  2. Cultural Capital: The Problem of Literary Canon Formation

    Delivery: 10-20 Working Days
    Customer Ratings (7 reviews)
    Price R866.00

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John Guillory challenges the most fundamental premises of the canon debate by resituating the problem of canon formation in an entirely new theoretical framework. The result is a book that promises to recast not only the debate about the literary curriculum but also the controversy over "multiculturalism" and the current "crisis of the humanities." Employing concepts drawn from Pierre Bourdieu's sociology, Guillory argues that canon formation must be understood less as a question of the representation of social groups than as a question of the distribution of "cultural capital" in the schools, which regulate access to literacy, to the practices of reading and writing.

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John Guillory
University Of Chicago Press
University Of Chicago Press
University Of Chicago Press
University Of Chicago Press
Most Helpful Customer Reviews

With a sort of Humanities meet the Social Sciences game, author John Guillory approaches the structure that enable the distribution of power, the role of curriculum in this distribution of power, the question of diversity and opennes of the canon in the humanities and other matters of interest, using productively the notion of symbolic capital contributed by French sociologist Pierre Bourdieu, but this is only part of the story. Reading this book is a journey of discoveries and illuminations of the never so clear entrapments that mine the field of cultural and literary criticism leading scholars to produce unwanted consequences when progressive agendas of research are set without considering the influence of the structure of power described by John Guillory.
The original; now relevant in the US more than ever
For any scholar working in the fields of literary history or 'philology', Guillory's 'Cultural Capital' should be a mandatory reference source. Brilliantly assembling the diverse concerns of multi-culturalism, aesthetic theory, post-Marxism and canon formation, Guillory manages to offer a work of impressive relevance and scope.
The principle objective of Guillory's project, as he himself asserts, is to revise the popular misconceptions about canon formation:
'The largest thesis of the book is that the debate about the canon has been misconceived from the start, and that its true significance is one of which the contestants are not generally aware. The most interesting question raised by the debate is not the familiar one of which texts or authors will be included in the literary canon, but the question of why the debate represents a crisis in literary study.' (Guillory: 1993:vii)
Dealing with the canon debate particularly as it concerns Anglo-American... Read more
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