Marxist Criticism Criticism: Marxist Interpretations - Essay

Raman K. Singh (essay date 1974)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Singh, Raman K. “Marxism in Richard Wright's Fiction.” Indian Journal of American Studies 4, nos. 1-2 (1974): 21-35.

[In the following essay, Singh examines Richard Wright's works in the context of his Marxist leanings.]

Marxism may be said to be the chief ideological influence on Richard Wright. From the early stories in Uncle Tom's Children (written in the thirties) to The Outsider (1953), the impact of Marxist thought is felt in one way or another. Even though Wright left the Communist Party, he continued to be influenced by the general precepts of Marxism; a study of Wright's selected fiction shows that he often used Marxism to shape the...

(The entire section is 6399 words.)

Geta LeSeur (essay date 1989)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: LeSeur, Geta. “Claude McKay's Marxism.” In The Harlem Renaissance: Revaluations, by Amritjit Singh, William S. Shiver, and Stanley Brodwin, pp. 219-31. New York and London: Garland Publishing, Inc., 1989.

[In the following essay, LeSeur explores the impact of Marxism on the works of Claude McKay.]

Claude McKay remains today part of the acknowledged literary triumvirate of the Harlem Renaissance. He shares this prestigious position with Langston Hughes and Jean Toomer. Each in his own way made a lasting contribution to Afro-American literature and politics because of the uniqueness each possessed. McKay, however, was perhaps the most controversial of the...

(The entire section is 4102 words.)

Monika Langer (essay date 1991)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Langer, Monika. “Sartre and Marxist Existentialism.” In Sartre Alive, edited by Ronald Aronson and Adrian van den Hoven, pp. 160-82. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1991.

[In the following essay, Langer contends that Jean Paul Sartre's ideas about the freedom of human spirit supply the philosophical foundation that Marxism seems to lack.]

A recurrent theme in the philosophical literature of the last quarter-century has been the relationship between Sartrean existentialism and Marxism. Much of the discussion has centered on the unorthodox nature of Sartre's Marxism as presented in his Critique of Dialectical Reason, and on the connection...

(The entire section is 9858 words.)

Christian Bök (essay date winter 1995)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Bök, Christian. “The Secular Opiate: Marxism as an Ersatz Religion in Three Canadian Texts.” Canadian Literature 147 (winter 1995): 11-22.

[In the following essay, Bök notes that the three Canadian texts under discussion present a problem for Marxist critics seeking works that offer an analytical representation of Marxist failure.]

Proletarian literature in Canada often produces ideological misgivings in Marxist critics, particularly Robin Mathews in “The Socio-Political Novel” (146), Bruce Nesbitt in “The Political Prose” (175), and Clint Burnham in “The Dialectics of Form” (101), all of whom suggest that few noteworthy Canadian texts, if...

(The entire section is 4628 words.)

Phillippe Roger (essay date 1997)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Roger, Phillippe. “Barthes with Marx.” In Writing the Image after Roland Barthes, edited by Jean-Michel Rabaté, pp. 174-86. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1997.

[In the following essay, Roger examines Barthes' involvement with theater and Marxism in the 1950s.]

For a long time, French grade crossings have greeted road travelers with this warning: Attention! Un train peut en cacher un autre. (Caution! One train can hide another approaching train.) It is no less true of titles, and mine might well hide another. In fact, the first draft of this chapter announced “Barthes and Marx.” No matter how slight, the distortion had me...

(The entire section is 5801 words.)

Peter Hitchcock (essay date March 1999)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Hitchcock, Peter. “Answering as Authoring: or, Marxism's Joyce.” Mosaic 32, no. 1 (March 1999): 55-69.

[In the following essay, Hitchcock draws a parallel between various crises in the development of Marxist thought and its ongoing interpretations of James Joyce's work, noting that Marxist critics have ignored Joyce's own positions in his writing in favor of discussions regarding the political agenda of his work.]

Marxist literary criticism has always occupied a somewhat Janus-faced position between aesthetic and social-science concerns—never hesitant to proclaim the idealism of the one while steadfast in its resistance to the material certitudes of the...

(The entire section is 6045 words.)