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Reception Theory

In modern times, the role of the reader or audience has been given a great importance in analyzing a text— the text may be in written form, creative art or other media types. As a literacy theory having this importance, “Reception-Theory is the historical application of a form of reader-response theory that was proposed by Hans Robert Jauss in “ Literary History as a Challenge to Literary Theory” (in New Literary History, Vol.  2, 1970-71).”(quoted in Abrams)

The core members frequently mentioned as propounders of this theory are Hans Robert Jauss, Wolfgang Iser, Karlheinz Stierle and Harald Weinrich. Arthur Asa Berger(1995) states, “Reception theorists are vaguely similar in that they focus on the roles that audiences (readers of texts, decoders of texts) play in the scheme of things, and not on texts themselves.”
Wolfgang Iser (1988) suggests that the readers or the audiences of a text play an important role in the “realization” of a text. He writes, “The phenomenological theory of art…
Recent posts

Development of Ancient Greek Tragedy as Traced from Aristophanes’ The Frogs

Aristophanes’ The Frogs is a comedy, a latter genre of literature, but beneath its extravagant caricatures, he has some serious purpose. In the second part of the play there is a debate competition at the dinner table of Hades between Aeschylus and Euripides to acquire the seat of 'Best Tragic Poet'. The contest is held with Dionysus as judge. Actually, through this debate we can trace a development of ancient Greek tragedy—how the Greek tragedy was developed, from Aeschylus, in the hands of  Sophocles and Euripides, especially  of Euripides.
A long line of philosophers--which includes Plato, Aristotle, Saint Augustine, Diderot, Voltaire, Hume, Hegel, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, Kierkegaard, Freud, Benjamin and Delouse--have analysed, speculated upon and criticised the tragic form. Among them, Aristotle has given, in his Poetics, the widely accepted theory of tragedy which is based on the examples of Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides. According to Aristotle, "Tragedy, then, …

The character of Helen in The Iliad

Helenin Greek mythology, the daughter of ZeusandLeda (or Nemesis), wife of King Menelaus of Sparta is thought to be the most beautiful woman in the world. Her abduction by Paris brought about the Trojan War. Anyone reading about this mythic character does not obtain any unified perspective by various writers. Some writers including Homer take on entirely negative views of Helen. While other writers bear both positive and complex views. Now we will evaluate the character of Helen in The Iliad.

Though Helen does not have any active part in Homer’s The Iliad—she appeares before us only six times, all the incidents take place for her. The exquisite beauty of Helen is well known. If anyone wants to refer to any beauty, he mostly uses allusion, simile or metaphor of Helen, the paragon of beauty. Even characters like Dr. Faustus in Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus long for having Helen beside them— “Sweet Helen, make me immotal with a kiss— Her lips suck forth my soul: see where it flees!—           Come, …

John Stuart Mill’s Concept of Liberty

John Stuart Mill(20 May 1806 – 8 May 1873),Britishphilosopher, political economist, civil servant and Member of Parliament, was an influential liberal thinker of the 19th century. His On Liberty contains a rational justification of the freedom of the individual in opposition to the claims of the state to impose unlimited control, and has become a classic of libertarian philosophy.
Mill’s subject of this Essay is not the so-called Liberty of the Will, but “Civil, or Social Liberty: the nature and limits of the power which can be legitimately exercised by society over the individual”.  Mill draws our attention to historical overview of  the  “struggle between authority and liberty” describing the tyranny of government, which may prove a “dangerous weapon” and which, in his view, needs to be controlled by the liberty of the citizens. He divides this control of authority into two mechanisms: necessary“political liberties or rights”,belonging to citizens, and the “establishment of constitu…

Nature in Robert Frost

Nature possesses a great place in Frost’s poetry. Most of his poems use nature imagery and devices. Taking nature as a background, he usually begins a poem with an observation of something in nature and then moves toward a connection to some human situation or concern. His treatment of nature is different from other nature poets: he is neither a transcendentalist nor a pantheist. Therefore, his use of nature is the single most misunderstood element of his poetry. Frost himself said over and over, "I am not a nature poet. There is almost always a person in my poems." (frostfriends.org)
The elements and settings of Frost’s poetry are natural. Wikipedia comments on his setting, “His work frequently employed settings from rural life in New England in the early twentieth century.”(wikipedia). The rural scenes and landscapes, homely farmers, and the natural world are used to illustrate a psychological struggle with everyday experience in the context of  everyday American life and psy…