Can you give illustrative examples of each theory to explain its domain in easy steps to practice analyzing literary text on my own.

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danylyshen eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I'm afraid your question is a huge one and may not be able to be answered in one posting. There are many ways to practise and indulge literary criticism.

1. Feminist criticism looks at the way females are treated in any given text. How does power work between male and female characters? See Showalter, De Bouvoir, Atwood, etc.

2. Linguistic analysis / semiotics concentrates on symbolism and the structure and relationship of form to meaning. See Northrope Frye, Ferdenand de Saussure, etc.

3. Existential analysis looks at the nature of Being and existence in any given text. See Heidegger, Sartre, Jaspers, etc

4. Psychological criticism looks at family, background, the concious and unconscious mind, disorders, etc. See Freud, Jung, and Jacques Lacan. Julia Kristeva.

5. Marxist criticism looks at relationships between the bourgouisie and the proletariat, conflicts, revolution, modes of production, etc. See Jameson and Karl Marx

See also Reader Response (Fish), Mythical (Joseph Campbell, Frye) Hermeneutics (Gadamer, Husserl), Phenomenology (Gadamer, Ponty), New Criticism (Eliot, Richards, Ransom), Deconstruction (Derrida, Bloom), Cultural Criticism (Edward Said).....and the various intermingling of each of these!! See what I mean?!?! There's other schools, individual theorists, NOT included on this list....

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