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Criticism Essay Topics & Paper Examples

Criticisms and dedication

Plato used analogies throughout his writings to be able to explain clearly what concepts and relationships he would like to imply. One of the problems or issues that Plato would link to address is the misconceptions about a philosopher. Plato demonstrates that the soul is divided into three, the reason, the appetite and passion. Accordingly, Plato explains this idea using an analogy of a chariot drawn by three horses. Ideally, a person should be run by reason instead of the other two as Plato indicates. With this in mind, the distinction between a philosopher and a non-philosopher can easily be distinguished since a philosopher is someone who is led by reason instead of passion and appetite. Plato had another way…

Criticism Philosophy

Not too many people can listen none defensively, or none antagonistically, to criticism. And very few of those who listen admit it when they see that they are wrong. The thing is, we think that admission of guilt, or of being wrong, or that we have made a mistake, is a sign of weakness. Yet true failure is repeatedly refusing to see your faults. Learning to listen to criticism is a life skill that we’d all do well to master. It is about keeping our hearts open (deferring judgment), and ensuring that we are not emotionally aroused (intimidated, irritated, etc.) by our critic (this is deferring reaction). Learning to listen to criticism is about carefully absorbing what is being said,…

Gender Criticism

The study of human behavioral pathways can intensify the scope of how each individual is grouped according to preferences. In this aspect, it would be important to study the role of gender ideals in molding the society. Gender criticism is the overall approach in understanding the ideas about the complete make up of men and women (Bedford 1). This includes the notion acceptance of what is masculine and what is feminine. It regards sexuality as a very complex method of classification which basically becomes a reflection of a particular culture based on what is feminine and what is masculine relative to that society’s norms. The study does not regard sexuality as mere classification of heterosexuality and homosexuality. On the other…

Film Theory and Criticism

Maya Deren is known as one of those in Hollywood who represented everything that was not Hollywood. A film theorist and film maker, among other things, Maya Deren was born as Eleanora Derenkowsky in Kiev, Ukraine. She was born into the film making industry, named after an Italian actress. After moving to Syracuse, New York, it was here where she began her interest in the socialist movement. It was also this move which influenced much of her life and her direction in movies. Maya Deren began her formal education at Syracuse University where she was an active member of the Trotskyist Young People’s Socialist League. She eventually went on to work with Katherine Dunham where she got her chance to…

Explaining Pentadic Criticism

Pentadic criticism is a form of criticism particular to speaking about artefacts. As concerns actions, intentions and attitudes required to influence action, and is interpreted through the text or language by the critic (Burke, 1996). This form of criticism is common place in the media, particularly in the forms of newspapers and journals, but it can also be seen in relation to public speaking. It looks at factors known as labels used in rhetorical language. These factors are the five factors we have already shown. They are commonly known as the agent, the act, the agency or means, the scene and the purpose. By looking at the artefact being spoken about, the critic can then interpret these five factors. After…

Psychological Criticism

Psychological criticism is an approach in analyzing literary texts through the use of psychological concepts especially the human desires and feelings that a person is unaware of. The text is analyzed and understood together with the possible responses of the reader as well as the author of the text. Psychological criticism basically begins with trying to understand the author’s psychological conflicts as revealed in the literary piece. Characters in the story are also analyzed in terms of putting them into real-life situations. Lastly, psychological criticism also seeks to know the appeal of the literary piece to its readers and the ability of the readers to identify their personal desires and fears in life. In the poem “Piano,” author D. H….

A Marxist Criticism

Through experience, a person gains a broader understanding of what life is like. Children may believe that they possess a wealth of knowledge but new lessons, even if valiantly resisted, are absorbed to create a new way of looking at things. Toni Cade Bambara’s “The Lesson” deals with social inequality, a concept which Miss Moore tries to introduce to her young charges through practical lessons that reveal what society is all about. More importantly, the short story is about learning life’s lessons even if they are harsh. Thus, the lesson referred to by the title is not the typical lesson that one would expect; this is not a lesson that can be learned from just any four-walled classroom but this…

African American Criticism

Lois Tyson in the “African American Criticism” section of his famous book “Critical Theory Today” tried to make familiar the readers with the fundamental aspects of African American literary history. In this mission he explained different important and concerning factors which arise in the mind of the reader while reading the book. Actually to satisfy the need of the students who are ignorant or less knowledgeable about different major issues of African American History like the Great Migration, the Civil Rights movement, the Black Power Movement and many others, he wrote this book. Moreover African American being a large population in the United States contributed immensely to the arts and literature of the American society. He also drew the attention…

Drive-In Theatre – Analysis And Criticism

In this research paper, the author talks about drive-in theatres. He has dealt on the history, prosperity and the decline of drive-in theatres. The author has given a long account of the history of the drive-in theatres. Though Hollingshead is the inventor of drive-in theatres, he did not enjoy the benefit of his invention for long. This bitterness and the long court battles are well elucidated by the author. The author has rightly pointed out that drive-in theatres prospered during the baby-boom. A lot of facilities were offered by the drive-in theatres to families like laundry, car wash and children area. The reasons for prosperity of drive in theatres given by the author are very rational and pragmatic. One of…

Dr. Johnson’s Criticism of Shakespeare

Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), a flamboyant and versatile scholar, expresses his view of Shakespeare in his edition of Shakespeare’s plays which are enriched by his prefaces. But like other critics he does not eulogize the poet; on the contrary, he dwells on the faults in his plays. He shows a very balanced and unbiased mind capable of judging the merits and demerits of his plays without being influenced by the hallow effect. He reads neither to admire everything, nor does he contradict his excellence; he performs the task of weighing and considering what he reads and offers his comments which have a moral bias. In “The Preface to Shakespeare”  he admires him as  “the poet of nature, not of learning; the…

Arnold’s Epochs of Expansion

“I am bound by my own definition of criticism: a disinterested endeavor to learn and propagate the best that is known and thought in the world;” (Leitch 824) said the Victorian poet and critic Matthew Arnold. Matthew Arnold, an English poet and critic whose work was both a representative of the Romantic ideas and of the Victorian intellectual concerns later on was the primary literary critic of his age. Arnold’s critical theories is highlighted mainly through his most important critical prose “The Function of Criticism at the Present Time” in which he examines the role of the critic in society and presents his critical concept. Arnold’s contribution to literary theory is his theories on epochs of expansion and epochs of…

Nature and Function of Literary Criticism

The word criticism is derived from the Greek word meaning ” judgment”. Hence, criticism was known to be the exercise of judgment on works of literature, or it can be said that criticism is the play of mind to observe the merits and defects on the work of literature. A critic , therefore, is a person who expresses judgment on works of literature or poetry or the art of an artist or a painter. The critic is also defined as a person who is possessed of the knowledge necessary to enable him to pronounce right judgments upon the merits or worth of such works as come within its province. However, the question that is always asked, does the critic has…

A Dual-Criticism Look at The Birthmark

Literature is many things: provoking, heartwarming, emotional, traumatic, poetic, maybe even life-changing. Literature can also be incredibly ambiguous. While literature can be “simply read”, when one takes a step back and looks at a piece through specific lenses, the work can take on an incredibly different, deeper meaning. Taking the lead of criticisms such as formalist, psychoanalytical, biological, feminist, Marxist, etc., one can dig deeper into a text and discover new meanings and morals from it. Not only can this confirm obvious written meanings, it can also take a seemingly black and white concept and fill it in with shades of grey, providing new possibilities and interpretations that might conflict, support, or enhance an initial reading. For the purposes of…

A Pursuit of Happiness a Movie Review

The Pursuit of Happiness is a movie about a struggling salesperson who takes custody of his son, as he is ready to begin a life-changing experience. The movie stars Will Smith, with co-stars Jaden Smith, Thandie Newton, Brian Howe, Kurt Fuller, and James Karen, among many others. Will Smith, who plays Chris Gardner, is a great man deep down and just wants to do right, but everything just seems to be falling apart at the same time. Chris causes financial difficulties for his family by losing his current job and then has troubles with his relationship with his wife that leaves him and moves to New York. Without money and wife, Chris is totally committed to his son Christopher. Will…