Cultural Capital: The Problem of Literary Canon Formation

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University of Chicago Press, 1993 - Literary Criticism - 392 pages
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John Guillory challenges the most fundamental premises of the canon debate by resituating the problem of canon formation in an entirely new theoretical framework. The result is a book that promises to recast not only the debate about the literary curriculum but also the controversy over "multiculturalism" and the current "crisis of the humanities." Employing concepts drawn from Pierre Bourdieu's sociology, Guillory argues that canon formation must be understood less as a question of the representation of social groups than as a question of the distribution of "cultural capital" in the schools, which regulate access to literacy, to the practices of reading and writing.
 

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Contents

Canonical and Noncanonical The Current Debate
3
Case Studies
83
Mute Inglorious Miltons Gray Wordsworth
85
Ideology and Canonical Form The New Critical Canon
134
Literature after Theory The Lesson of Paul de Man
176
Aesthetics
267
The Discourse of Value From Adam Smith to Barbara Herrnstein Smith
269
Notes
341
Index
385
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