Practicing New Historicism

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Broadly speaking, New Historicism is a way, or a bundle of ways, of writing about literary history which incorporates insights provided by other intellectual disciplines, refuses to isolate literature from other forms of discourse, and assumes that the entire culture, including many aspects of it generally overlooked by conventional history—for instance, anecdotes concerning the lives and behavior of ordinary people—can be regarded as text, with all of its parts somehow interrelated. The New Historicists have absorbed methods and materials from a diversity of sources, not least from the speculations of the French philosopher of history Michel Foucault concerning the operations of power and the conflicts of discourse in a given society.

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But it is probably true that their practice has been most influenced by the anthropologist Clifford Geertz. Search the catalogue for collection items held by the National Library of Australia.

Practicing New Historicism

Gallagher, Catherine. Practicing new historicism.

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Practicing New Historicism. Published September, Reviews A tour de force of new literary criticism. But they do so in ways that their predecessors—the Victorian scholars who used history as an interpretive tool before the New Critics began to avoid it—would scarcely comprehend. Moreover, with misplaced modesty, they refuse to claim that their interpretations are any better than others—which, of course, is an imposed interpretive principle of its own. Ironically, because everything they write suffers from what might be called the fallacy of excessive significance i.