Lucien Goldmann Peter Demetz - Essay

Peter Demetz

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

Lucien Goldmann thinks in terms of totalities, comprehensive tendencies, representative figures…. [He] began as a student of law and, while still in his native Rumania, turned to dialectical materialism. During his subsequent exile in Prague and Zurich (where he wrote his doctoral dissertation on Kant), he devoted himself to history, sociology, and philosophy. (p. 85)

Goldmann elaborates general descriptions of social groups in their reactions to the historical changes which they must confront, and the characteristic thoughts and linguistic constructs by which they respond. As cultural critic, Goldmann attempts to define the relationship between group consciousness and the work of art: a given...

(The entire section is 1182 words.)