The Banyan Shades

Learning Literary Criticism and theory: part 2

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Consult the following passage and answer to see if Statement R is an accurate reasoning
for Statement A, provided that both of them are true. Select the correct option for Q1
and 2.


Differance often functions as an aporia: it is difference in neither time nor space and makes both
possible. Ousia and parousia are the Greek words for being governed by presence; parousia
also contains the sense of reappropriation of presence in a second coming of Christ. Epekeina
tes ousias is the Platonic term for the beyond of being; Derrida has often used this concept as a
stepping-stone in his deconstructions. Derrida also consistently plays on the derivation of sens
(meaning or sense; Sinn in German) which includes both a supposedly intelligible, rational
sense (a signified meaning) and a vehicle dependent on the senses for its expression (the
signifier). Further, in French sens also means direction; to lose meaning is to lose direction, to
be lost, to feel that one is in a labyrinth.


Q1. Statement (A): In French, the term “sens” comprises both an intelligible, rational sense (a
signified meaning) and a vehicle reliant on the senses for expression (the signifier).
Reasoning (R): According to Derrida’s play on the etymology of “sens,” which also means
direction in French, losing meaning is akin to losing direction, feeling lost, or being in a labyrinth.


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(A).
Statement (A): The statement correctly conveys that the term “sens” in French comprises both
an intelligible, rational sense (a signified meaning) and a vehicle reliant on the senses for
expression (the signifier). This corresponds to the passage’s explanation of “sens”.
Reasoning (R): The reasoning correctly interprets Derrida’s play on the etymology of “sens,”
which also implies direction in French. The logic correctly implies that losing meaning, as
represented by the dual nature of “sens,” is analogous to losing direction, feeling lost, or being
trapped in a labyrinth.
As a result, both the claim and the reasoning are right, and the reasoning gives a correct and
coherent explanation for the assertion.


Q2.
Statement A: According to the passage, one of the Greek words examined, “parousia,” includes
not just the sense of being governed by presence, but also the implication of reappropriation,
especially in the context of Christ’s second coming.
Statement R: Hence, Derrida, in an attempt to offer a Platonic solution to the problem of an
established essence in form of parousia and ousia, would use the concept of aporia.
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): The statement appropriately depicts the meaning of “parousia” in the given
context, noting that it encompasses the sensation of being governed by presence as well as the
connotation of reappropriation, especially in the context of Christ’s second coming.
Statement (R): However, the reasoning is incorrect. It implies that Derrida would employ aporia
to propose a Platonic solution to the dilemma of an established essence in the shape of
parousia and ousia. The material in the paragraph does not support this. Derrida engages with
aporia, but not in the setting indicated to propose a Platonic solution. It is clearly mentioned in
the passage that Derrida would employ the Platonic concept of Epekeina tes ousias or world
beyond being to argue for deconstruction.
Hence, the correct answer is Option ( C).


Consult the following passage and answer to see if Statement R is an accurate reasoning
for Statement A, provided that both of them are true. Select the correct option for
Question 3 and 4.


While the concept of Being belongs to the entire metaphysical tradition, its translation into
English has become particularly difficult since Heidegger’s analyses of it. German and French
share the advantage that their infinitives meaning to be (sein, etre) can also be used as
substantives that mean Being in general. Further, in each language the present participle of the
infinitive (seiend, etant) can also be used as a substantive meaning particular beings. No such
advantage exists in English, and since Heidegger is always concerned with the distinction
between Sein (etre, Being in general) and Seiendes (etant, beings) the correct translation of
these substantives becomes the first
problem for any consideration of Heidegger in English. (The verb forms present no difficulties:
sein and etre as infinitives become to be, and the gerunds seiend and et ant become being.) I
feel that it is preferable to “entity” not only because, as they state, “in recent British and
American philosophy the term ‘entity’ has been used more generally to apply to anything
whatsoever, no matter what its ontological status” , but also because ”entity•’ derives from ens,
the Latin present participle for the verb to be, esse. No one has been more attentive than
Heidegger to the difficulties caused by the translation of Greek thought into Latin. ‘The Latin
inheritance of “entity” continues the tradition of these difficulties. Once more, we face the
problem of the transformation of one language by another.


Q13.
Statement (A): In translation, the term “entity” is popularly preferred over other possibilities. Not
only does it accurately express ontological status, but it also corresponds to the Latin present
participle “ens.”
Reasoning (R): Heidegger’s preoccupation with the translation of Greek philosophy into Latin is
obvious in his preference for “entity,” which maintains continuity with the challenges provided by
the Latin inheritance.
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: The assertion accurately claims that the term “entity” is preferred in translation
over other options because it accurately conveys ontological status and aligns with the Latin
present participle “ens.”
Statement R: The reasoning is incorrect as the passage states Heidegger’s attentiveness to the
problem of translation of Greek thought into Latin. Heidegger is not shown to prefer the term
“entity”. Rather, it is the author’s opinion that Heidegger makes a clear distinction between
substantive and infinitive forms of seiend and et ant, making “entity” less preferred.
Hence, Option C is the correct choice.


Q 4.
Statement (A): Due to the lack of a direct parallel to the German and French employment of
infinitives as substantives for being, translating Heidegger’s analyses of Being into English
presents difficulties.
Statement (R): In English, the present participle is easily translated because both infinitives “to
be” and gerunds “being” accurately represent Heidegger’s distinctions.
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: The assertion (A) correctly indicates that translating Heidegger’s analyses of
Being into English presents difficulties due to the lack of a direct parallel to the German and
French usage of infinitives as substantives for Being. The material in the paragraph supports
this.
Statement B: The reasoning (R) is incorrect. It implies that the present participle is easily
translated into English, as both infinitives “to be” and gerunds “being” accurately represent
Heidegger’s distinctions. However, the passage illustrates that the present participle is difficult to
translate into English since it lacks a straightforward parallel for explaining Heidegger’s
distinctions.
As a result, the right answer is C) A is true, but R is untrue.


Q.5. Why did Ferdinand de Sassure argue against a ‘diachronic’ study of language rather than
a’synchronic’ approach?
a) Diachronic study lacks historical depth;
b) Synchronic study offers access to linguistic aspects at the same time.
c) Diachronic research is arbitrary.
d) Synchronic research concentrates on historical linguistics.


Solution : Correct Answer: b) Synchronic study offers access to linguistic aspects at the same
time.
Synchronic study enables access to language elements at the same time. Saussure advocated
for a synchronic approach, emphasizing a system in which all language parts are theoretically
available at the same time.This will allow for a systematic study of language, contributing to
comprehensive development of Structuralist theory.


Q6. What does “signifiant” mean in Saussure’s linguistic theory?
a) A word’s significance
b) A word’s acoustic image or sound pattern
c) An arbitrary connection between a word and a thing
d) An existential relationship between a word and a thing
Answer: Option (B)
Correct Answer: b) A word’s acoustic picture or sound pattern
Explanation: In Saussure’s theory, “signifiant” refers to the acoustic image or sound pattern of a
word.


Q7. According to Benjamin, what is lost when an art object is mass (re)produced?
a) Its physical presence in time and place
b) Intellectual detection of vestiges
c) Aura and connection with the observer
d) Sensual appreciation of the mythological


Correct Answer: c) Aura and connection with the observer
Explanation: According to Benjamin, the ‘aura’ of an art piece is lost when it is mass
(re)produced, diminishing the bond with its viewer.


Q8. Why, in 1936, did Benjamin urge for a return to the ‘living immediacy’ of tribal culture?
a) To break out from the original prescriptive and ceremonial setting;
b) To cultivate a sensual enjoyment of legendary and allegorical imagery;
c) Engage in psychological analysis in contemporary society
d) Accept modern culture’s individuality
Correct Answer: b) To enhance sensual appreciation of legendary and metaphorical imagery
Explanation: Benjamin advocates a return to tribal culture in order to develop sensual
appreciation and escape from the original environment.


Q9. Why did Walter Benjamin regard reading or seeing as solely aesthetic acts?
a) Aesthetic activities are divorced from the process of producing and maintaining artifacts.
b) Artefacts are not critical acts in and of themselves; c) Commentary is the principal form of
interaction with the artifact; and d) Aesthetic acts lack connection with the power of the original.
Solution


The correct answer is: a) Aesthetic activities are divorced from the process of producing and
maintaining artifacts.
Explanation: Benjamin continually saw reading or seeing as part of the process of creating and
sustaining artifacts.


Q10. What effect did Jakobson’s paper ‘Linguistics and Poetics’ have on literary criticism and
analysis?
a) It critiqued Anglo-American critics;
b) It introduced Russian formalists to structuralist traditions;
c) It enhanced the structuralist tradition of poetics and textual analysis in Anglo-American
criticism;
d) It invented the notion of ‘literariness’.
Solution: Option (C )
Jakobson’s work ‘Linguistics and Poetics’ had a significant impact on Anglo-American criticism
by expanding the structuralist tradition of poetics and textual analysis. It opened up new
avenues of thought and contributed to a better comprehension of the linguistic characteristics of
literary works.


Q11. What fundamental components did Roman Jakobson identify as foundational models for
discourse organization?
a) Allegory and simile
b) Metaphor and metonymy
c) Alliteration and assonance
d) Irony and satire


Correct answer: b) Metaphor and metonymy.
Metaphor and metonymy, according to Roman Jakobson, are two essential rhetorical figures
that function as organizing principles in various forms of cultural expression. Metaphor employs
symbolic comparisons, whereas metonymy is based on the association of related elements.


Q12. In respect to Freud’s categories, how does Lacan identify Jakobson’s distinction between
metaphor and metonymy?
(A) Lacan rejects Jakobson’s distinction.
(B) According to Lacan, they are associated with chaos and primitive drives.
(C) Lacan links them to Freud’s concepts of condensation and displacement.
(D) Lacan contends that they are unimportant in psychoanalysis.


Answer (C). Based on Lacan’s integration of linguistic concepts into Freudian psychoanalysis,
Option C is the most suitable choice. Lacan, recognized for his radical psychoanalytic theories,
uses Jakobson’s metaphor and metonymy as parallels to Freud’s condensation and
displacement. Condensation refers to the compression of meanings into a single symbol in this
context, reflecting the non-literal usage in verbal metaphor. Similarly, displacement entails the
transfer of emotional significance across ideas, similar to how words are replaced by others with
similar meanings in linguistic metonymy. Lacan highlights the inherent relationship between
language and the underlying processes that shape human subjectivity by matching these
linguistic structures with Freud’s psychoanalytical mechanisms. Option C summarizes Lacan’s
theoretical standpoint simply, demonstrating his blending of linguistic and psychoanalytic
concepts.


Q13. In light of Lacan’s dictum, how does the idea “the unconscious is structured like a
language” influence the psychoanalytic approach?
A) It involves a reliance only on preverbal intuition.
B) It forbids the use of current languages in psychoanalytic procedures.
C) It means that chaos and primitive drives should be the center of psychoanalysis.
D) It comprises the application of current language methodologies and concepts.
Answer: D) It requires the use of current language procedures and concepts.
Explanation: Lacan’s dictum emphasizes the intimate relationship between the unconscious and
language, arguing for current linguistic tools to be included into psychoanalysis.


Q14. How does Lacan define the influence of language entrance on the human subject?
A) Achieving independence beyond language limits.
B) Achieving language usage transparency.
C) Recognize the fallacy and illusion of personal autonomy.
D) Establishing a direct link with primordial instincts.
Answer: Option (C)
Explanation: According to Lacan, entering into language does not lead to independence from its
restrictions, but rather exposes the illusion of individual autonomy. Option C correctly represents
this viewpoint, emphasizing Lacan’s denial of an autonomous self independent of linguistic
impact. The other alternatives falsify Lacan’s point of view by implying independence (A),
transparency (B), and a direct link with primordial impulses (D), all of which contradict his
position.


Q15. How does Lacan dispute Saussure’s premise about the relationship between signified and
signifier?
A) According to Lacan, the relationship is too solid and unproblematic.
B) Lacan claims that the link is unimportant in psychoanalysis.
C) According to Lacan, signifiers may only refer to the same signified without contradiction.
D) According to Lacan, signifiers might relate to the same signified or be contradictory.


Answer: Option (D) According to Lacan, the signifiers may relate to the same signified or be
contradictory.
Explanation: By highlighting the fluidity and intricacy of the link between signifiers and signified,
Lacan undermines Saussure’s presupposition. Option D catches this subtlety perfectly,
emphasizing Lacan’s critique of Saussure’s concept that the link is secure and
unproblematic.The other choices distort Lacan’s point of view by implying excessive security
(A), irrelevance to psychoanalysis (B), and exclusive reference without conflicts (C), all of which
violate Lacan’s critical attitude on language and its inherent complexity.

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