Reader-response criticism - Wikipedia

 

the reader response approach to literature considers

reader-response strategy. an approach to literary analysis that considers the active creation of meaning by individual readers. sociological strategy. Choose a strategy for interpreting literature and apply it to a work you have read in this unit or in a previous unit. Include appropriate textual evidence to . Considers readers' reactions to literature as vital to interpreting the meaning of the text. However, reader-response criticism can take a number of different approaches. A critic deploying reader-response theory can use a psychoanalytic lens, a feminists lens, or even a structuralist lens. At its most basic level, reader-response criticism considers readers' reactions to literature as vital to interpreting the meaning of the text. However, reader-response criticism can take a number of different approaches. A critic deploying reader-response theory can use a psychoanalytic lens, a feminist lens, or even a structuralist lens.


Reader-Response Theory


When you think about literature, you probably think of authors and texts. Authors write literary works. So they're the ones who decide what a text meansright? And us readers? Well, the reader response approach to literature considers secondary to authors, because hey, we're just readers. If you hadn't already guessed by the name of the movement, Reader-Response theory says that readers are just as important as the authors who write literary works.

Hey, if a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? Don't let this blow your mind, but Reader-Response theorists actually think that readers are active participants who create a work of literature in the process of reading it. The meaning of a text, according to Reader-Response theorists, exists somewhere between the words on the page and the reader's mind. Think of it this way.

If we say, "The Shmoop labradoodle totally ate that cupcake," each individual person reading that sentence will have a different image of the Shmoop labradoodle, of the Shmoop headquarters, and the reader response approach to literature considers the cupcake. Some readers will probably imagine a cute dog, others will imagine a naughty dog, and everyone will try to fill in the blanks to figure out what happened and why.

It'll all depend on each individual reader's experience with dogs, cupcakes, and Shmoop. The interpretation each reader has will probably be similar, but each will be slightly different.

The big contribution of Reader-Response theorists was to call attention to the importance of the reader in the making of literary meaning. Reader-Response theorists like to ask questions like: How do we feel when we read a certain poem, or a passage from a novel?

Why do we feel that way? How does our psychology affect the way we read literary texts? How does each of us read differently? Only when we ask those questions, these theorists argue, can we truly begin to understand literature.

Ever read a book and think, "I'm just not getting this. Am I stupid or something? That's part of being a reader, right? Texts move you or they don't move you. They confuse you or they clarify things for you. Characters in a novel may remind you of real people in your life; a description in a poem may make you remember some childhood incident; heck, a book can even change your life. Reading is a totally personal experience, the reader response approach to literature considers, after all.

Well, that's the whole point of Reader-Response theory, the reader response approach to literature considers. This theory allows you to take your own personal feelings and your own perspective into account when you analyze a literary text.

According to Reader-Response theorists, it is significant that a certain character reminds you of Dad, or that a certain passage recalls something from your childhood.

Reader-Response theory isn't just about understanding a text better; it's also about understanding yourself better. Up until the s, New Criticism reigned supreme in American universities. New Criticism was all about focusing on the text itself: you weren't supposed to think about the context, or about the author—and certainly not about the reader. Reader-Response theorists helped dethrone New Criticism from its privileged position by, well, the reader response approach to literature considers, drawing attention to the reader.

They also helped pave the way for a lot of other literary schools that followed in the s and s, like Poststructuralism and New Historicism.

The ideas of both these schools were closely affiliated with the focus on reading and subjectivity that the Reader-Response theorists first called attention to. All rights reserved. Reader-Response Theory. Yeah, not so fast. Why Should I Care? Why Should Readers Care? Why Should Theorists Care? Logging out…. Logging out You've been inactive for a while, logging you out in a few seconds I'm Still Here! W hy's T his F unny?

 

CRITICAL APPROACHES TO LITERATURE

 

the reader response approach to literature considers

 

Considers readers' reactions to literature as vital to interpreting the meaning of the text. However, reader-response criticism can take a number of different approaches. A critic deploying reader-response theory can use a psychoanalytic lens, a feminists lens, or even a structuralist lens. reader-response strategy. an approach to literary analysis that considers the active creation of meaning by individual readers. sociological strategy. Choose a strategy for interpreting literature and apply it to a work you have read in this unit or in a previous unit. Include appropriate textual evidence to . Don't let this blow your mind, but Reader-Response theorists actually think that readers are active participants who create a work of literature in the process of reading it. The meaning of a text, according to Reader-Response theorists, exists somewhere between the words on the page and the reader's mind. Think of it this way.