Theoretical Schools and Circles in the Twentieth-Century Humanities
Literary Theory, History, Philosophy
Schools and circles have been a major force in twentieth-century intellectual movements. They fostered circulation of ideas within and between disciplines, thus altering the shape of intellectual inquiry. This volume offers a new perspective on theoretical schools in the humanities, both as generators of conceptual knowledge and as cultural phenomena. The structuralist, semiotic, phenomenological, and hermeneutical schools and circles have had a deep impact on various disciplines ranging from literary studies to philosophy, historiography, and sociology. The volume focuses on a set of loosely interrelated groups, with a strong literary, linguistic, and semiotic component, but extends to the fields of philosophy and history—the interdisciplinary conjunctions arising from a sense of conceptual kinship. It includes chapters on unstudied or less studied groups, such as Tel Aviv School of poetics and semiotics or the research group Poetics and Hermeneutics. The volume presents a significant supplement to the standard historical accounts of literary, critical, and related theory in the twentieth century. It enhances and complicates our understanding of the twentieth-century intellectual and academic history by showing schools and circles in the state of germination, dialogue, controversy, or decline, in their respective historical and institutional settings, while reaching simultaneously beyond those dense settings to the new cultural and ideological situations of the twenty-first century.
Table of Contents
1. The Russian Formalists as a Community Tomaš Glanc 2. Bakhtin and his Circle Daphna Erdinast-Vulcan and Sergeiy Sandler 3. Prague Linguistic Circle Lubomír Doležel 4. From Circles to the School (and Back Again) The Case of Polish Structuralism Adam Kola and Danuta Ulicka 5. The Greimassian Semiotic Circle Eric Landowski 6. Tel Quel: Theory and Practice Patrick ffrench 7. Tales out of (the Yale) School Joseph Hillis Miller 8. The Chicago School: From Neo-Aristotelian Poetics to the Rhetorical Theory of Narrative James Phelan 9. The Geneva School: Form and Signification in Motion Olivier Pot 10. A School in the Woods: Tartu–Moscow Semiotics Marina Grishakova and Silvi Salupere 11. Small World: The Tel Aviv School of Poetics and Semiotics Brian McHale and Eyal Segal 12. Poetics and Hermeneutics (Poetik und Hermeneutik) Renate Lachmann 13. Annales on the Move Jacques Revel 14. Lignes: Intellectual circle, or intellectual spacing? Adrian May
Marina Grishakova is Associate Professor of Comparative Literature at the University of Tartu. She is the author of The Models of Space, Time and Vision in V. Nabokov’s Fiction: Narrative Strategies and Cultural Frames (2nd ed. 2012) and a co-editor of Intermediality and Storytelling (with Marie-Laure Ryan, 2010). Her articles appeared in Narrative, Sign Systems Studies, Revue de littérature comparée and international volumes, such as Strange Voices in Fiction (2011), Disputable Core Concepts in Narrative Theory (2012), Literature, History and Cognition (2014), and Intersections, Interferences, Interdisciplines: Literature with Other Arts (2014).
Silvi Salupere teaches in the Department of Semiotics at the University of Tartu. She is a co-editor of Sign Systems Studies, Tartu Semiotics Library, Acta Semiotica Estica and (with Jan Levchenko) Conceptual Dictionary of the Tartu-Moscow Semiotic School (1999).
'West in our 21st century continues to digest and transcend the past—a dense tangle of ideas coursing back and forth across the north Atlantic in the 20th century, through wars and peace, in a number of languages as well as English. Authors in this volume survey those centers and movements, finding their distinctive and overlapping and enduring features. The volume is indispensable for anyone seeking to understand the human sciences in either century.'-Myrdene Anderson, Professor of Anthropology and Linguistics, Purdue University, USA
'Schools and Circles is an exciting collection of essays filled with literary and historical insights. Everyone needs to read this book who aspires to understand the way critical movements operated in the century since the end of World War I, as groups with common programs and internecine differences, acting upon and reacting to the external intellectual and political forces that surrounded them.' -David H. Richter, Professor of English, Queens College, CUNY, USA
'This volume really provides two books for the price of one. On the one hand it offers a succinct and very readable introduction to many important schools and circles of the twentieth century; on the other its various contributors with ties to the groups in question also give the inside view. The result is a collection that is pertinent and fun.' -Luc Herman, Professor of Literature in English and Narrative Theory, University of Antwerp, Belgium