What are the main criticisms against a postmodernist critique and deconstructionist methodology?

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thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

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Deconstructionism and the `high theory` branch of postmodernism have been criticized from the perspectives of neo-pragmatism, speech act theory, historicism, and cultural studies. Neo-pragmatists argue that deconstructionists do not pay sufficient attention to the disciplinary construction of literary knowledge (see Stanley Fish for this line of critique). John Searle criticizes Derrida, in a well-known set of debates, for lack of attention to the social and intentional nature of the speech act. Historicists argue that deconstruction, and much of the related `high theory` of the 1970s and 1980s ignored the historical situatedness of literary texts. From a cultural studies perspective, it can be argued that deconstruction does not take into account how race, class and gender affect production and reception of literary texts.


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