The Banyan Shades

Learning Literary Criticism and Theory: Part 1

Literary Criticism and Theory
DIRECTIONS for the question 1 to 10: In each of the questions given below, there are two
statements marked as Assertion (A) and Reason (R). Mark the correct answer out of the four
choices (A),(B),(C),(D).


Q1. Select the correct option:
Statement A: The aristotelian mimetic theory looks at art as serving a practical role in the ideal
republic.
Statement R: Mimesis of praxis leads to muthos.
(A) Both A and R are true and R is the correct explanation of A.
(B) Both A and R are true but R is not the correct explanation of A.
(C) A is true but R is false.
(D) A is false but R is true.


Correct Answer: Option (D)
Explanation:
Statement A: According to the statement, Aristotelian mimetic theory regards art as playing a
practical role in the ideal republic. While Aristotle’s “Poetics” emphasizes the mimetic arts’
educational and emotional advantages, it does not directly address their position in an “ideal
republic.” The place of art in an ideal republic is discussed in Plato’s The Republic, not by
Aristotle. As a result, Statement A is fairly unclear and incorrect.
Statement B: “Mimesis of praxis leads to muthos” corresponds to Aristotle’s concepts in
“Poetics.” Mimesis refers to imitation; praxis refers to the actions of the outside world; and
muthos refers to a well-formed plot. According to Aristotle, a well-formed narrative, or muthos,
results from the imitation of meaningful and purposeful activities. In the perspective of
Aristotelian mimetic theory, Statement B is correct.
Given this analysis, a prudent decision will be:
Option (D)


Q2. Select the correct option out of the four choices.
Statement A: The value of art, according to the early classical theorists, depended to a large
extent on capturing the essence belonging to the world of being.
Statement R: The worlds of being and becoming are essentially linked by imitation.
(A) Both A and R are true and R is the correct explanation of A.
(B) Both A and R are true but R is not the correct explanation of A.
(C) A is true but R is false.
(D) A is false but R is true.


Answer Option (B)
Statement A: This claim implies that early classical philosophers believed that the worth of art
rested on its ability to convey the essence of existence. While different classical theorists’ ideas
may differ slightly, many ancient philosophers, notably Plato and Aristotle, emphasized the
concept of art capturing or emulating the ideal Forms or essence of the realm of being.
Statement R: Through imitation, this statement establishes a link between the realms of being
and becoming. This is consistent with Platonic and Aristotelian conceptions, in which art is
considered a bridge between the material world of being and the ideal world of being through
imitation. Hence, this assertion is also true. In relation to Statement A, the statement “The
worlds of being and becoming are essentially linked by imitation.” is more of a premise or
essential information that can precede Statement A. Since Statement R does not address the
relationship between art’s function in creating a relationship between the world of being and the
world of becoming, it cannot be an appropriate reasoning and explanation of Statement (A).
This choice (B) expresses the concept that both assertions are true, but Statement R is not the
correct explanation for Statement (A).


Q3. Select the correct option out of the four choices.
Statement A: Longinus’ answer to Plato’s attack on Poetry can be interpreted on the lines of
Harold Bloom’s concept of The Anxiety of Influence.
Statement R: It is the speculative opinion of poetry enthusiasts that Plato was in fact possessed
by Homer and tried to surpass him in creative arts as his philosophy is powered by myths.
(A) Both A and R are true and R is the correct explanation of A.
(B) Both A and R are true but R is not the correct explanation of A.
(C) A is true but R is false.
(D) Both A and R are false.


Answer: Option (A)
Statement A: The claim implies that Longinus responded to Plato’s denunciation of poets by
turning plato oh his head. Longinus claims that throughout Plato’s work, there is a fight (agon)
between Plato and Homer, and that the desire to outdo Homer results in Plato’s great art. The
concept of Anxiety of Influence describes the poet’s artistic and psychological drive to outdo
their greatest predecessors. Hence, Longjnus describes Plato as a master poet. Statement A is
true in suggesting that in the attempt to outdo Homer, Plato himself produces a masterpiece in
poetry. Hence, Statement A is true.
Statement R: According to the Statement, despite Plato’s criticisms of poetry, his philosophy
was motivated by a desire to outdo Homer in creative arts by including mythological elements.
Plato does incorporate elements of myths, like the allegory of the cave, into his writing. Hence,
this statement is true. Statement R is the correct explanation of Statement A as it refers to the
concept of Anxiety of influence in Plato’s attempt to outbid his predecessor and adopt the
creative style of the oral poets that came before him. Plato is indirectly paying tribute to the
poetic tradition and trying to surpass it at the same time. Hence, this makes Statement R the
correct explanation for Statement A.


Q4.
Statement A: Literary works exist independently of the author’s objectives and cultural
influences according to the Objective theory of Art.
Statement R: The formalists study Art as havin an intrinsic value that surpasses its context of
production and consumption.
(A) Both A and R are true and R is the correct explanation of A.
(B) Both A and R are true but R is not the correct explanation of A.
(C) A is true but R is false.
(D) A is false but R is true.
Answer (B)
Statement A: This statement is consistent with the Objective Theory of Art, which holds that
literary works exist apart from the author’s intentions and cultural influences. The Objective
theory focuses on the inherent features of the work itself. Hence, Statement A is correct.
Statement R: The term “formalism” refers to a school of thinking related to the Objective Theory
of Art. Formalists analyze art, especially literature, with an emphasis on intrinsic values,
stressing the work’s inherent qualities rather than its external environment. Hence, Statement R
is correct.
While both statements include concepts about the autonomy and intrinsic value of literary
works, Statement R particularly discusses formalism, which is a subset of the larger Objective
theory of Art. As a result, while both assertions are correct, the second statement (R) fails to
offer a direct and comprehensive explanation of the first statement (A). The Objective Theory of
Art embraces a variety of viewpoints, and formalism is merely one viewpoint within that larger
framework. Hence, the answer is Option (B).


Q5.
Statement A: Hegel’s conception of art offers a Christian re-working of Plato’s works.
Statement R: According to Hegel, ideas travel through an incarnational journey in three distinct
stages.
(A) Both A and R are true and R is the correct explanation of A.
(B) Both A and R are true but R is not the correct explanation of A.
(C) A is true but R is false.
(D) Both A and R are false.
Answer. Option (A)
Statement A: According to this statement, Hegel’s aesthetics entails a Christian reworking of
Plato’s works. This is a reasonable interpretation. Within the context of his own
Christian-influenced philosophical system, Hegel did engage with and reinterpret portions of
Plato’s ideas.
Statement R: According to this statement, the Hegelian notion of art would align with the
incarnational journey of spirit assuming a concrete form. Hegel wrote about art progressing in
three stages: symbolic, classical, and romantic, undergoing the process of incarnation: or
assuming a more concrete form. While the term “incarnational journey” is not explicitly Hegelian,
it is consistent with the overall concept of art as a process of expressing abstract or spiritual
meaning in concrete, material forms. It symbolizes the historical growth of art in Hegel’s
philosophy, progressing from symbolic depiction of spiritual truths to a more refined and
harmonious expression, and finally, in the romantic phase, to a subjective and emotionally
charged kind of embodiment.
Christian interpretation of Hegelian art implies interpretation of the journey of art through the
journey of the embodiment of the Holy spirit in Jesus Christ. In Christian theology, even before
Jesus was born, he existed in pre-incarnate state. In the symbolic phase of art, the idea has not
yet found its formative principle. In the classical phase, a free and adequate embodiment of the
idea is achieved, and in the Romantic phase, the art becomes transcendent (which suggests
synthesis). This idea is consistent with the incarnational journey of Christ. Hence, Statement R
provides one with the appropriate reasoning for Statement A.


Q6.
Statement A: The romantic phase of art, according to Hegel, is infact a synthesis of the
preceding phases.
Statement R: Romantic art entails breaking down of perfection, completion, and rigidity of the
classical form.
(A) Both A and R are true and R is the correct explanation of A.
(B) Both A and R are true but R is not the correct explanation of A.
(C) A is true but R is false.
(D) A is false but R is true.
Answer: Option (B)
Statement A: According to Hegel, the romantic period in art is a synthesis of the preceding
periods (symbolic and classical). According to Hegel’s philosophy of art, the romantic phase
symbolizes the conclusion or synthesis of the artistic growth that happened throughout the
symbolic and classical stages. Hence, Statement A is correct.
Statement R: The statement accurately represents one component of Hegel’s philosophy’s
romantic period. According to Hegel, Romantic art deviates from the classical form’s
completeness, completion, and rigidity. It liberates itself from the confines of classical principles
by introducing subjectivity, emotion, and a more individualized expression. Hence, statement R
is correct.
As a result, both statements are true, but the second (R) statement is not a straightforward and
valid explanation of the first (A). While both statements represent characteristics of Hegel’s
concept of art, the breaking down of perfection and rigidity in the classical form is a feature of
the romantic phase, it does not fully explain why the romantic phase is regarded as a synthesis
of the prior phases.Hence, the correct answer is Option (B).


Q7.
Statement A: Hegel’s dialectic speaks to the freedom of artistic expression and the progression
of art.
Statement R: Marx interprets Hegel’s dialectic to bring about social freedom.
(A) Both A and R are true and R is the correct explanation of A.
(B) Both A and R are true but R is not the correct explanation of A.
(C) A is true but R is false.
(D) A is false but R is true.
Answer: Option ©.
Statement A: This assertion is correct. Hegel’s dialectic, a technique of intellectual debate and
development, is frequently associated with artistic freedom and evolution. The unfolding of ideas
in Hegel’s dialectic entails a process of thesis, antithesis, and synthesis, and this process can
be used to analyze the evolution of art.
Statement R: The statement is incorrect. Marx interpreted Hegelian dialectic in material and
deterministic terms, leading to the formulation of dialectical materialism. Marx predicted
Communism as an eventual outcome of social and historical development as synthesis of the
prior two modes of Primitive Communism (Thesis) and Class Society (Anti-thesis). The value of
freedom is contested, and Marx didn’t interpret the Hegelian dialectic to drive social change.
The materialist interpretation was made to understand historical development. In fact, his
interpretation of historical development is seen as deterministic, which is the opposite value of
freedom. Hence, Statement R is false and the two statements are not connected to each other.


Q8.
Statement A: The complicated histories of newly independent nations and the challenges they
face following formal colonization are frequently explored in postcolonial literature.
Statement R: Decolonial literature is concerned with continuous struggles against colonial
legacies, such as neocolonialism and globalization.
A) Both A and R are true, and R is the correct explanation of A.
B) Both A and R are true but R is not the correct explanation of A.
C) A is true, but R is false.
D) A is false, but R is true.
Answer. Option (B)
Statement A: This is correct. Postcolonial literature looks into the intricate workings of newly
independent nations and the issues they face after legal colonization. It investigates the cultural,
political, and social ramifications of colonialism in the postcolonial age.
Statement R: While accurate, this is not the correct explanation for Statement A. Decolonialism
as a movement follows the Post-colonial age and do not belong to the same era. Statements A
and R reflect characteristics of postcolonial and decolonial literature independently, without
being a clear explanation of the other. Statement R addresses the problems of decolonial
literature, specifically the continuous battles against colonial legacies such as neocolonialism
and globalization.
As a result, Option (B) is the correct answer because both claims are true, but the second
statement (R) is not a straightforward and correct explanation of the first statement (A).


Q9.
Statement A: Literary criticism evaluates particular texts within the context of greater literary
theories in its practical application of theories.
Statement R: Literary theory, on the other hand, is only abstract, delving into overarching
concerns like the nature of literature, language, and the act of reading.
A) Both A and R are true, and R is the correct explanation of A.
B) Both A and R are true but R is not the correct explanation of A.
C) A is true, but R is false.
D) A is false, but R is true.
Answer: Option (C)
Statement A: This statement is correct. Literary criticism does, in fact, examine specific texts
within the context of greater literary theories. Critics use theories to interpret and evaluate the
artistic and intellectual characteristics of specific works.
Statement R: The reasoning, however, is not totally correct. Literary theory is not limited to the
abstract; it can include both abstract and tangible aspects. It addresses broad issues, yet it is
not confined to the abstract. Although the application of ideas in literary criticism is a practical
feature, this does not imply that literary theory is entirely abstract.
Hence, Statement A is true but R is false.


Q10.
Statement (A): Deconstruction entails questioning the innate hierarchies found in many
organizations, as well as disrupting the established centers that define Western religion,
science, and metaphysics.
Statement (R): According to the theory of deconstruction, the displacement of a center causes a
cascading effect, causing the displacement of other structures within a given system.
A) Both A and R are true, and R is the correct explanation of A.
B) Both A and R are true but R is not the correct explanation of A.
C) Both A and R are false.
D) A is false, but R is true.
A) Both A and R are true, and R is the correct explanation for A.


Explanation:
Option (A)
Statement (A): Deconstruction does, in fact, include challenging the innate hierarchies found in
many institutions, as well as disrupting the established centers that define Western religion,
science, and metaphysics. This is a core tenet of deconstructionist thought.
Statement (R): As advocated by deconstruction, the displacement of a center generates a
cascading effect, causing the displacement of other structures within a given system. This is a
key principle in deconstruction, in which the destabilization of a central concept or authority
leads to a reevaluation of the entire system.
As a result, both the statement and the reasoning are right, and the reasoning describes the
concept offered in the claim appropriately.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *