The Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism


First Edition of the massive collection of literary T&C writings of the past 2½ millennia


New York & London: W.W. Norton & Company, 2001. General Editor Vincent B. Leitch, edited by William E. Cain, Laurie A. Finke, Barbara E. Johnson, John McGowan, Denean Sharpley-Whiting and Jeffrey J. Williams. Single volume of xxxviii + 2,624 pages, First Edition, first printing on thin Bible (scritta) paper, thick octavo, 24.2 x 16 cm, weight 2 kg. Contents; Alternative Table of Contents (Part I: Modern and Contemporary Schools and Movements; Part II: Genres; Part III: Historical Periods; Part IV: Issues and Topics); Preface, Acknowledgments, Introduction to Theory and Criticism, Anthology (page 29 to page 2,524), Selected Bibliography of Theory and Criticism, Permissions Acknowledgments, Author/Title Index, Subject Index.

Book and dust jacket as new.

These are the seminal texts of literary theory and criticism—from the Gorgias of Leontini (c.483-376 B.C.E.) to the theorist Stuart Moulthrop (born 1957)—central to shaping western culture and identity. The volume, which is particularly strong on western and 20th century theory and criticism, includes key writings of 148 eminent authors, ranging from celebrated writers since antiquity to philosophers, theorists and psychologists. Issues of race, nationality, class, gender, and sexuality are well-represented. Contributions have contextualising headnotes with substantial and substantive author biographies before each critical work, making connections with other critics, theorists and movements. An Alternative Table of Contents provides information under movements (e.g., cultural studies, deconstruction and post-structuralism, queer theory); genres (poetry, novel, etc.); historical periods, and issues and topics (e.g., the body, authorship, the canon, narrative, representation and realism, the modern).

The Anthology is an important reference, and a valuable tool for readers interested in training their critical thinking skills. One former student wrote that her greatest post-study regret was selling this book. A second edition of the Anthology, published in 2010, selling second-hand for between AU$150 and AU$250, adds fewer than 140 pages.