What are the best books for better understanding lit, asides from just reading more lit itself? Any recommendations/reading list on crit/theory would be appreciated
pleb opinion: the post
super entry level stuff:
norton anthology of theory if you want the comprehensive overview
well wrought urn by cleanth brooks for poetry
mimesis in OP pic is good
shakespeare by mark von doren is a good shakespeare overview
Thomas C Foster - How to Read Literature like a Professor
Crash Course: Literature (youtube lectures)
How to Read a Book - Mortimer J. Adler and Charles Van Doren
Harold Bloom - How to Read and Why
these are all super bland and kinda gets mired down in stuff like symbol hunting and really basic, high school english tier stuff that would probably make people think lit crit is boring/pointless/anyone can do it :|
bloom is a bit better but it's still one of his mass market $$$ books and not any serious lit crit
I'm not the person you are originally speaking to, so you have no reason to say that to me as you do not know my opinion on the subject.
You like to think you are a troll, but authentic idiocy shines through.
I do go around with the recognition that people who are smarter than me exist and that other people have had different lives and educations so will have different understandings of writing than myself.
Building on what this guy said, the Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism is pretty good, I have the second edition and it's essentially just extracts from the history of aesthetic and literary criticism, ordered chronologically and with introductions for every writer to give you a feel for them.
Beyond that, it gives you lists to read for content, genre, school, etc., so whilst it's expensive, it's fairly comprehensive, and as you're reading the philosipher themselves (barring translations) you're not coloured by others bias, and you can follow up on whomever interests you. That said, don't know if it'll help you better understand, it's often more about the function/purpose/meaning of art than how to read, if that's what you're looking for.
imo, yes. i own an edition of the european literature from enlightenment through modernism and did own one of british literature through the same time period. i used both books for college classes and we skipped through most of the text (obviously). there is context given before each author, and even without that context, the pieces can be read on their own. however, some pieces or snippets of a much larger text which is a bit of a bummer depending on the piece.