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The Critical Pulse
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The Critical Pulse: Thirty-Six Credos by Contemporary Critics

Jeffrey Williams and Heather Steffen

Abstract

This anthology asks thirty-six leading literary and cultural critics to elaborate on the nature of their profession. These credos boldly defend the function of criticism in contemporary society and showcase its vitality in the era after theory. Chapters address literature and politics, with some focusing on the sorry state of higher education and others concentrating on teaching and the fate of the humanities. All reflect the critics' personal, particular experiences. Deeply personal and engaging, these stories move, amuse, and inspire, ultimately encouraging the reader to develop his or her o ... More

Keywords: literary critics, cultural critics, contemporary society, criticism, literature, politics, critical thought

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2012 Print ISBN-13: 9780231161152
Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015 DOI:10.7312/columbia/9780231161152.001.0001

Authors

Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jeffrey Williams, editor
Carnegie Mellon University

Heather Steffen, editor

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Contents

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A Critic’s Progress

4 What I Believe and Why

Vincent B. Leitch

6 Long Island Intellectual

Jeffrey J. Williams

Academic Labor

7 We Work

Marc Bousquet

10 Against Heroism

John Conley

11 Pack Consciousness

Heather Steffen

Declarations of Politics

14 Geopolitical Translators

David B. Downing

15 Critical Credo

Barbara Foley

16 This I Believed

Michael Bérubé

Pedagogical Moments

18 Credo of a Teacher

Gerald Graff

20 Teaching Friction

Ann Pellegrini

21 Coerced Confessions

Bruce Robbins

22 On Race and Literature

Kenneth Warren

23 Teaching Theory

Diana Fuss

The Defense of Literature

26 Wrestling with the Angel

Morris Dickstein

28 Criticism Is Vital

David R. Shumway

29 Critical Credo

Mark Bauerlein

New Turns

31 Without Evidence

Stephen Burt

33 Open

Kathleen Fitzpatrick

34 Timing

Mark Mcgurl

35 The Politics of Small Problems

Frances Negrón-Muntaner

36 The Power of Unknowing

Judith Jack Halberstam

End Matter