M.A. & Ph.D. Reading Lists [updated version]

Critical Theory

Critical Theory

Note:  All French books published in Paris unless otherwise noted.


  • Barthes, Roland. "Introduction à l'analyse structurale des récits," in L'Aventure sémiologique, 167-206.  Seuil, 1985.
  • Benjamin, Walter. "The Work of Art in the Age of Technical Reproduction," in Illuminations, ed. Hannah Arendt, trans. Harry Zorn, 217-51.  NY: Schocken, 1969. ["Das Kunstwerk im Zeitalter seiner technischen Reproduzierbarkeit," in Illuminationen: Ausgewählte Schriften, 148-84.  Frankfurt a.M.: Suhrkamp Verlag, 1961.]
  • Brooks, Cleanth. "The Language of Paradox," in The Well-Wrought Urn: Studies in the Structure of Poetry, 3-20. NY: Reynal and Hitchcock, 1947.
  • Brooks, Peter. "Freud's Masterplot: A Model for Narrative," in Reading for the Plot: Design and Intention in Narrative, 90-112.  NY: Vintage, 1985.
  • Cixous, Hélène. "Le rire de la méduse," L'Arc 61 (1975): 39-54.
  • de Man, Paul. "Semiology and Rhetoric," in Allegories of Reading: Figural Language in Rousseau, Nietzsche, Rilke, and Proust, 3-19. New Haven: Yale UP, 1979.
  • Derrida, Jacques. "La structure, le signe et le jeu dans le discours des sciences humaines," in L'Écriture et la différence, 409-28. Seuil, 1967.
  • Eagleton, Terry. Literary Theory: An Introduction. Minneapolis: U Minnesota P, 1983.
  • Foucault, Michel. "Qu'est-ce qu'un auteur?" in Dits et écrits, 1954-1988, ed. Daniel Defert et François Ewald, t. I, 789- 821. Gallimard, 1994.
  • Irigaray, Luce. "Ce sexe qui n'en est pas un," in Ce sexe qui n'en est pas un, 23-32. Minuit, 1977.
  • Lacan, Jacques. "Le séminaire sur 'La lettre volée'," in Écrits, 11-61. Seuil, 1966.
  • Poulet, Georges. "Phénoménologie de la conscience critique," in La Conscience critique, 275-99. J. Corti, 1971.
  • Saussure, Ferdinand de. Cours de linguistique générale, ed. Tullio Mauro, 13-61, 97-140.  Payot, 1972.
  • Shklovsky, Victor. "Art as Technique," in Russian Formalist Criticism: Four Essays, trans. Lee T. Lemon and Marion J. Reis, 5-24. Lincoln: U Nebraska P, 1965. ["L'Art comme procédé," in Théorie de la littérature, ed. Tzvetan Todorov, 76-97. Seuil, 1965.]
  • Showalter, Elaine. "Feminist Criticism in the Wilderness." Critical Inquiry 8 (1981): 243-70.
  • Spivak, Gayatri Chakravorty. "Scattered Speculations on the Question of Cultural Studies," in Outside in the Teaching Machine, 255-84. NY: Routledge, 1993.
  • Williams, Raymond. "Cultural Theory," in Marxism and Literature, 75-141. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1977.


  • Althusser, Louis. "Idéologie et appareils idéologiques d'état," in Positions, 67-125. Editions sociales, 1976.
  • Barthes, Roland. "L'activité structuraliste," in Essais critiques, 213-20. Seuil, 1964.
  • -----. "La mort de l'auteur," in Le Bruissement de la langue. Seuil, 1984.
  • Bataille, Georges. "La Notion de dépense," in La Part maudite, 25-45. Minuit, 1967.
  • Benjamin, Walter. "On Some Motifs in Baudelaire," in Illuminations, ed. Hannah Arendt, trans. Harry Zorn, 217-51.  NY: Schocken, 1969. ["Über einige Motive bei Baudelaire," in Illuminationen: Ausgewählte Schriften, 201- 45.  Frankfurt a.M.: Suhrkamp Verlag, 1961.]
  • Benveniste, Émile. "Les relations de temps dans le verbe français" et "De la subjectivité dans le langage," in Problèmes de linguistique générale, t. I, 237-50, 258-66. Gallimard, 1966.
  • Bhabha, Homi. "Of Mimicry and Men," in The Location of Culture, 85-92. NY: Routledge, 1994.
  • Blanchot, Maurice. "La littérature et le droit à la mort," in La Part du feu, 293-331. Gallimard, 1949.
  • Bourdieu, Pierre. "Champ intellectuel et projet créateur," Les Temps modernes (1966).
  • de Man, Paul. "The Resistance to Theory," in The Resistance to Theory, 3-20.  Minneapolis: U Minnesota P, 1986.
  • Derrida, Jacques. "Freud et la scène de l'écriture," in L'Écriture et la différence, 293-340. Seuil, 1967.
  • -----. "Linguistique et grammatologie," in De la grammatologie, 42-108. Minuit, 1967.
  • -----. "Signature événement contexte," in Marges de la philosophie, 365-93. Minuit,1972.
  • Eikhenbaum, "The Theory of the Formal Method," in Russian Formalist Criticism: Four Essays, trans. Lee T. Lemon and Marion J. Reis. Lincoln: U Nebraska P, 1965. ["La Théorie de la 'méthode formelle'," in Théorie de la littérature, ed. Tzvetan Todorov, 31-75. Seuil, 1965.]
  • Felman, Shoshana. "Henry James: Madness and the Risks of Practice (Turning the Screw of Interpretation)," in Writing and Madness (Literature/Philosophy/Psychoanalysis), 141-247. Ithaca: Cornell UP, 1985.
  • Foucault, Michel. "Intervista a Michel Foucault ('Entretien avec Michel Foucault')," in Dits et écrits, 1954-1988, ed. Daniel Defert et François Ewald, t. III. Gallimard, 1994.
  • -----. "Scientia sexualis," in Histoire de la sexualité, t. I: La volonté de savoir, 69-98. Gallimard, 1976.
  • Frye, Northrop. "Polemical Introduction," in The Anatomy of Criticism, 3-29. Princeton: Princeton UP, 1957.
  • Genette, Gérard. "Discours du récit," in Figures III, 65-282. Seuil, 1972.
  • Heidegger, Martin. "Language," in Poetry, Language, Thought, trans. Albert Hofstadter, 189-210. NY: Harper and Row, 1971. ["Die Sprache," in Unterwegs zur Sprache, 9-33. Pfullingen: Neske, 1959.]
  • Jakobson, Roman. "Two Aspects of Language and Two Types of Aphasic Disturbances," in Language in Literature, ed. Krystyna Pomorska and Stephen Rudy, 95-114. Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1987.
  • Jameson, Fredric. "On Interpretation: Literature as a Socially Symbolic Act," in The Political Unconscious: Narrative as a Socially Symbolic Act, 17-102. Ithaca: Cornell UP, 1981.
  • Johnson, Barbara. "The Frame of Reference: Poe, Lacan, Derrida," in The Critical Difference: Essays in the Contemporary Rhetoric of Reading, 110-46. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 1980.
  • Kamuf, Peggy, and Nancy K. Miller, "Replacing Feminist Criticism," "The Text's Heroine: A Feminist Critic and Her Fictions," and "Parisian Letters: Between Feminism and Deconstruction," in Conflicts in Feminism, ed. Marianne Hirsch and Evelyn Fox Keller, 105-33. NY: Routledge, 1990.
  • Kristeva, Julia. "The System and the Speaking Subject," in The Kristeva Reader, ed. Toril Moi, 24-33. NY: Columbia UP, 1986.
  • -----. "La femme, ce n'est jamais ça," in Polylogue, 517-24. Seuil, 1977.
  • Lacan, Jacques. "L'instance de la lettre dans l'inconscient ou la raison depuis Freud," in Écrits, 493-528. Seuil, 1966.
  • Lévi-Strauss, Claude. "La structure des mythes," in Anthropologie structurale, 227-55. Plon, 1958.
  • Mitchell, Juliet, and Jacqueline Rose. Introduction to Jacques Lacan and the école freudienne, Feminine Sexuality, 1- 57. NY: Norton, 1982.
  • Montrose, Louis. "Professing the Renaissance: The Politics and Poetics of Culture," in The New Historicism, ed. H. Aram Veeser, 15-36. NY: Routledge, 1989.
  • Ong, Walter J. "The Writer's Audience is Always a Fiction."  PMLA 90 (1975): 9-21.
  • Propp, V. "Les transformations des contes merveilleux," in Théorie de la littérature, ed. Tzvetan Todorov, 234-62. Seuil, 1965.
  • Sedgwick, Eve Kosofsky. "Introduction: Axiomatic," in Epistemology of the Closet, 1-63. Berkeley: U California P, 1990.
  • Spivak, Gayatri Chakravorty. "French Feminism in an International Frame," In Other Worlds: Essays in Cultural Politics, 134-53. NY: Methuen, 1987.
  • Tompkins, Jane P. "Introduction," in Reader-Response Criticism: From Formalism to Post-Structuralism, ix-xxvi. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 1980.
  • Wimsatt, W. K., and Monroe Beardsley, "The Intentional Fallacy," in The Verbal Icon: Studies in the Meaning of Poetry, 3-18.  Lexington: U Kentucky P, 1954.

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