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Biographical and Psychological Strategies Essay

Often, people would resolve into using the biographical strategy when they come into a dead end in trying to interpret a work. This is what I like about this particular strategy because it can provide answers to unanswered questions that are not possible to be derived from the work alone. Sometimes, a look at the life of the author helps in understanding a piece of literature.

Some say that is a lazy man’s approach into interpreting a text but that does not mean that it is not an effective way. I believe that in all works, there is always a piece of the author in their writings, making this strategy a valid one. We simply cannot deny the fact that the works of an author are almost always influenced by his experiences. I also like how this approach becomes investigative in nature because of the “digging” of information for the authors’ lives.

What I Don’t Like About Psychological Strategies Unlike biographical strategies, psychological strategies do not quite get me that excited. This strategy urges critics to look for “symbolic” meanings in every work which just complicate things. Though I understand the importance of symbols in literature, this strategy can sometimes be used too much and give symbolism into things and events that are not even meant by the author to have symbols.

Though this might contradict my likeness for biographical strategies, I believe that events should (at least most of the time) stand on their own. Another thing that I do not like about psychological strategies is the Oedipus complex theory; it is just far too taboo for me to think of such things. Speaking of theory, this is what mostly this strategy is based on—theory, which means, it is not as reliable as a biographical approach because the latter is based on the lives of the authors, not on speculated ideas.

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