(urth) Thecla's "Identity"

Ross Arlen Tieken ross.a.tieken at gmail.com
Fri Apr 5 09:58:20 PDT 2013

New Criticism is also appropriate because Wolfe, while primarily  
inspired by Borges, is also inspired by the Catholic English writing  
in the 1930's to the 1960's--Tolkien, Eliot, Pound, Tate, etc.--  
Modernist-Traditionalist writers, a tradition in which I think Wolfe  
has a prominent place. The New Criticism was supposed to encourage and  
analyze this type of writing. "Meaning is reconstruction rather than  
deconstruction" is actually a beautiful little summary of why this is  
so. Remember that modernism is not postmodernism (although they are in  
close relation), and Wolfe is definitely a modernist writer.


On Apr 5, 2013, at 11:42 AM, Marc Aramini wrote:

> I agree- new criticism (and historical criticism for valid context  
> most of the time) are the most sound and applicable techniques.
> I feel like the new critical approach would get the most out of  
> Wolfe- meaning is reconstruction rather than deconstruction.  For  
> example, Reading e e cummings "anyone lived in a pretty how town"  
> through that lens makes perfect sense, though words are used outside  
> their normal parts of speech- meaning is reinforced rather than  
> lost. Much of post modern thought is intentionally losing one self  
> in a haze, getting trapped in the Cartesian circle with no egress in  
> the absence of absolute parameters of signification.
> Sent from my iPhone
> On Apr 5, 2013, at 8:07 AM, DAVID STOCKHOFF <dstockhoff at verizon.net>  
> wrote:
> They have their own abstract methods, and while they try to make  
> those methods concrete, they also make them inflexible and blind.
>> I always liked New Criticism because I could get my mind around a  
>> "perfect" but "perfectly flawed" structure, where function  
>> transcends form. But the French guys always lost me at some point.
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Ross Arlen Tieken
Religious Studies
Rice University

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