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Literary Theory - Video

By Paul H. Fry

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(ENGL 300) This is a survey of the main trends in twentieth-century literary theory. Lectures will provide background for the readings and explicate them where appropriate, while attempting to develop a coherent overall context that incorporates philosophical and social perspectives on the recurrent questions: what is literature, how is it produced, how can it be understood, and what is its purpose? This course was recorded in Spring 2009.

Customer Reviews

great lectures, too bad they’re out of order

Fantastic series. It’s too bad whoever uploaded them hasn’t bothered to put them in sequential order. The sound is also very poor quality.

Very informative

This was a great course for learning an introduction to literary theory. The professor is funny at times, and seems to support the old notion that if a lecturer loves what they are talking about the course will be more interesting. This is a great course for anyone interested in how to think about texts and language.


The audio component of this course is qualitatively sufficient, but the volume is horrendous without amplificatory devices. The course has myriad useful and intriguing things to offer, but in the overture especially the course is sprinkled with long-winded sections tracing historical and intellectual context that will bore those of you seeking a barebones course - one devoted to modalities of hermeneutic methodologies appertaining to the sphere of application. The speaker is knowledgable and harbors wonderful insights into the field, but also harbors the proclivity to speak very slowlike so speeding up the video to 1.5x or 2x is recommended. All considered, despite the shortcomings of the course, this course grants you plethora of perspectives to explore whatever tomes you may find yourself engrossed, leaves little unanswered or unexplored, and will not only sate your immediate curiousity about literary theory but will leave this lingering interest that will grow to pique your interest, yet again, and force you to delve into the depths seeking deeper understanding.