MEG Solved Assignments

MEG 05 Literary Criticism & Theory Solved Assignments 2021- 22

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MEG 05 Literary Criticism & Theory Solved Assignments 2021- 22

MEG – 05

 Literary Criticism & Theory ASSIGNMENT 2021 – 2022 

(Based on Blocks (1 – 8)

Max. Marks: 100

Answer all questions.

1. Bring out the salient features of Plato’s attack on poetry’ 20

Answer: Plato, the renowned Greek philosopher who holds firm to his opinions on art, poets, and poetry, launches a series of assaults against the art form of poetry. In his Republic, he expresses his thoughts and ideas in great detail. The majority of Plato’s points of view are expressed as criticisms of poetry. Plato unquestionably thought that poetry had force, and that this power inspired others to emulate the things they saw in art. Because of his metaphysical views, this seems to be a terrible sign for him.

According to Plato, the essence of the world is that it is a copy of itself (mimesis). He thought that reality is made up of many levels. It is made up of concepts at the top, and all of the lower layers are modelled after those ideas. Mimesis, according to Plato, was just a representation rather than an expression that was creative. Plato claimed that a poet who depicts a chair in his poem does not accurately depict the actual piece of furniture. He was a believer in the presence of an absolute reality, according to him. This universe is made up of ideal things, of which the particular items that make up this world are nothing more than copies or reflections. The painter or poet who imitates these particular things is copying and imitating, and as a result, is creating something that is even more distant from reality than the original. For example, a chair exists first and foremost as a concept, secondly as an item of workmanship, and thirdly as an object of artistic expression. As a result, mimesis is three times distant from the actual world.

Plato was a strong believer in the significance of the actual form of a reality. He only believed in the most concrete manifestations of reality. Dramatized dialogue was unacceptable to him because it pushed individuals to live lives that were different from their own, according to his reasoning. Even today, parents teach their children something about the advent of cable television. T.V. Plato was just warning people about the dangers of mindlessly copying roles; he worried that the effect of imitation might be so powerful that it would totally take over the brains and lives of  countless young people and make it the most important thing in their life. Plato felt uncomfortable with the notion of sorrow produced by depictions of pain in the plays, and this was reflected in his writing. He was under the impression that a brief catharsis might affect the audiences so powerfully that they would become emotionally unmanageable as a result.

His main complaint toward mimesis was really the idea that both drama and epic mimic the world of immaterial appearances, which he considered to be a flaw in mimesis. The only world that existed for him was that of abstractions. Because the poet was imitating the look of abstraction, a drama or an epic was a derivative of the derivative, and so three times away from reality in his view. ‘They are pictures, not representations of reality.’ As can be readily observed while reading Plato’s Republic, he was the first major thinker to challenge society on philosophical grounds, whereas the rhetoricians never questioned society on philosophical grounds.

Following Plato’s thinking processes and theories, the Neo-Platonists of the fourth and fifth century AD understood Plato’s actuality of abstractions to be the Thoughts of God, in accordance with their own understanding of the world. As these theories suggested, artists might perhaps circumvent the realm of sensory appearances in order to get direct access to the real. Despite the fact that they did not directly contribute to ‘poiesis’ in the traditional sense, their interpretations prepared the way for the poets’ claims to be missionaries and the poet’s words to be taken as religious words or truth.

Among Plato’s writings are the Republic, Ion, Cratylus, the Dialogues of Plato, and the Phaedrus, to name just a few examples. When it comes to poetry, Plato has dealt extensively with the idea of the poet as divinely inspired in the Phaedrus and has discussed the role of poetry in a healthy society when it comes to the Republic. In fact, in Book II, he addresses the education of a decent citizen, as well as the nature of poetry and the importance of creative writing, among other topics. Book X of the Republic is devoted to a detailed discussion of the nature of poetry. His most significant contribution to literary theory comes in the shape of his criticisms on the concept of ‘poiesis.’ He does an excellent job of presenting this point via the lens of a painter. Plato, as we already said, believed in actual reality, in the ideal, and in abstractions as well. For him, things were nothing more than a representation of reality or the ideal, and he believed that a person copying an imitation would result in a mimetic form that was three times as far away from the ideal as the reality or the ideal. Poetry, in a similar vein, did the same thing for Plato – it was poor because it was an imitation of an imitation of something else.

The nature and distinguishing characteristics of ‘poiesis’ were later examined and demonstrated by Aristotle, who demonstrated that ‘poiesis’ was true, serious, and beneficial, whereas Plato had maintained that it was false, trivial, and harmful, and that the poet should be barred from participating in his republic.

2. Write short notes on the following: 4 x 5 = 20

a) Aristotle’s theory of tragedy

Answer: In his epoch-making work poetics, Aristotle sheds enough insight on tragedy to be considered authoritative. He has placed more importance in tragedy, which requires particular consideration. He was a huge fan of the Greek tragedians Sophocles, Euripides, and Aeschelus, among others. This group championed the art of theatre, raising tragedy to a high pedestal in the process, which assisted Aristotle in framing his theory of classical theatre. As defined by Aristotle, tragedy is “an imitation of an action that is serious, complete, and of certain magnitude, in a language that is beautified in different parts with different kinds of embellishment,” through actions rather than narration, and through feelings of pity and fear that result in catharsis of these emotions.” In his definition of tragedy, Aristotle places more stress on the essence of tragedy as well as its purpose or function. There is a fundamental distinction between humour and tragedy in that whereas the former deals with individuals achieving heroic status, comedy is restricted to the minor elements of human nature, portraying people who are worse than they really are in real life. Another distinction between tragedy and comedy is that tragedy needs serious action, while comedy has a great deal of grotesque activity. Tragedy is also more serious than comedy. Aristotle does not intend to propose that items be recreated or recreated in a creative manner; rather, he wants to suggest that objects be recreated or recreated in a creative manner.

As a result, Aristotle places more emphasis on the narrative or action in tragedies, while placing the character in the background. The action of a tragedy must be comprehensive, and it must consist of a logical succession of events. An introduction, middle section, and conclusion are required. The beginning is something which does not come after anything, but which occurs after the occurrence of anything else that does exist. What Aristotle is trying to convey is that a play should have a compelling rationale for starting and finishing in the places that they do. The commencement of an activity might be compared to a brief period of slack water before the tide turns. Even if the ghost had not arrived at the start of Hamlet, events in Denmark would have settled into a period of repose by the end of the play. In the same way, the middle is defined as something which comes after something else and leads to another item. The term “end” refers to anything that follows after something else but does not have anything else after it. Denmark, and especially the court, will be threatened by a ghostly apparition, which will serve to lay the ground for a quake that will sweep across the whole nation under its jurisdiction.

Aristotle has emphasised six aspects of tragedy, which are narrative, character, idea, and setting (as opposed to comedy). There are three types of entertainment: diction, spectacle, and song, with the first two occupying a prominent role. The first three components are internal elements, while the final three elements are exterior elements in the set of six elements. According to Aristotle, narrative has a significant advantage over character in a variety of ways. It is the plot that is the centre of attention around which the whole fortress of tragedy is built. Even one’s own character is subordinate to it. Tragedy is the imitation of an action and a life, rather than the imitation of persons. It is the actions of men that determine whether they are happy or miserable. Tragic events cannot occur in the absence of action, but a tragic event may occur in the absence of character. As a result, the narrative seems to be the heart of the tragedy, while the characters are relegated to a secondary role. In order for the narrative to work, it must have a single core subject, in which all of the components are intertwined to show the character’s change in fortune. The most significant distinction between Greek tragedy and contemporary tragedy is the latter’s continuous focus on narrative at the cost of character development in the former. A tragic hero is neither a criminal nor a particularly good person, and he is driven from pleasure to sorrow by his own weakness or by a lapse in judgement, among other things. The audience is moved to tears and terror by his performance, which subsequently overreaches them of these impurities…. As a result, a tragic hero ought to be a complex combination of virtue and human weakness, and vice versa. His tragedy must be the result of a lapse in judgement, and he must plummet from a lofty height of glory by making severe errors, and his acts must evoke the tragic feelings of sympathy and dread in others who see his plight and anxiety.

Tragedy is defined as the “impersonation of an action” (mimesis) that occurs as a result of “the rule of probability or necessity.” According to Aristotle, tragedy is communicated via drama rather than narrative; tragedy “shows” rather than “tells” the story. Accord to Aristotle, tragedy is a better and more intellectual kind of storytelling than history since history just recounts what has occurred, while tragedy dramatises what may occur. As a result, history is concerned with the specific, while tragedy is concerned with the universal. Events that have occurred may have occurred as a result of chance or coincidence; they may have occurred as a result of a unique circumstance.

As a result, they are of little interest to anybody else. Unlike other forms of entertainment, tragedy has its roots in the basic order of the universe; it produces an unbroken sequence of events that plainly exposes what might happen at any time or location since that is how the world works. As a result, tragedy elicits not just sympathy but also terror from the audience, who may see themselves caught up in the same place as the characters. As a result, they are of little interest to anybody else. Unlike other forms of entertainment, tragedy has its roots in the basic order of the universe; it produces an unbroken sequence of events that plainly exposes what might happen at any time or location since that is how the world works.

The “first principle” of tragedy is the plot, which is the most essential aspect of the story. Aristotle defines plot as “the organisation of the events”: that is, not the narrative itself, but the manner in which the incidents are given to the audience, or the structure of the play, in which the incidents are presented to the audience. According to Aristotle, tragedies in which the result is determined by a well crafted series of events are better than tragedies in which the outcome is determined mainly by the character and personality of the hero. Plots that fulfil this criteria will exhibit the characteristics listed below:

In order for the plot to be considered complete, it must have a beginning, middle, and finish. Modern critics refer to the opening of a play as the incentive moment because it must initiate the series of events without being reliant on anything beyond the scope of the play. The middle, or climax, of the story must be triggered by previous events and must itself trigger the events that occur after it.  Because the end, or resolution, must be brought about by the preceding events but must not result in other incidents that are not within the scope of the play, the end must solve or resolve the problem that was created during the incentive period.

The plot must be “comprehensive,” with “unity of action” throughout. To put it another way, Aristotle is saying that the narrative must be structurally self-contained, with the events being linked together by internal necessity, and each action leading inexorably to the next without any external interference. The worst plots, according to Aristotle, are those in which “The actions that take place one after the other without regard to any probable or desirable pattern.” The only thing that binds the events in such a plot together is that they all happen to the same individual. Whenever possible, playwrights should avoid include coincidental occurrences in their storylines; if a coincidence is necessary, it should “have an air of design,” that is, it should seem to have a predetermined relation to the events of the play. Additionally, the poet should eliminate or at the very least keep the irrational “beyond the realm of the tragedy,” that is, reported rather than portrayed, from his or her work. In order to achieve unity of action in his plot, he must “display innovation of his own and effectively manage the traditional materials,” despite the fact that he cannot alter the myths that serve as the foundation for his stories.

The plot must be “of a particular size,” both numerically (in terms of length and complexity) and qualitatively (in terms of “seriousness” and “universal importance,” among other things. According to Aristotle, storylines should not be too short; the larger the number of events and ideas that the writer is able to weave together in an organic unity, the greater the aesthetic worth and depth of the performance. Furthermore, the greater the universality and significance of the play’s meaning, the greater the ability of the writer to capture and retain the emotions of the audience, and the better the play will be. 3. The storyline may be either basic or complicated; nevertheless, complex is preferable than simple. Simple storylines consist only of a “change of fortune” (catastrophe). In complex plots, there is a “reversal of intention” (peripeteia) as well as a “recognition” (anagnorisis) that is linked to the disaster. Surprise has the ability to convert both peripeteia and anagnorisis. Peripeteia is defined as an event that occurs when an individual produces an effect that is diametrically opposed to that which he intended to produce, while an anagnorisis is defined as “a transition from ignorance to knowledge, resulting in feelings of love or hatred between the people who are destined for good fortune or bad fortune.” In his opinion, some of the most effective plots integrate these two elements as part of their overall results from the event (i.e., the peripeteia immediately leads to the realization), which in turn leads to the disaster, which in turn leads to the ultimate “scene of agony.”

Character comes in second on the list of priorities. When it comes to a perfect tragedy, the character will relate with the plot, which means that human motives will be intimately linked elements of the result of events that instil feelings of sorrow and dread in the audience. The protagonist must be well and wealthy, so that his fortunes may shift from good to terrible throughout the story. This transformation “should occur as a consequence of some major mistake or weakness in a person’s character, rather than as a result of vice.” When such a storyline is presented, the audience is most likely to feel both sympathy for and dread for the characters, since “pity is aroused by unmerited misery, and terror by the misfortune of a man like ourselves.” The word Aristotle used here, hamartia, which is generally translated as “tragic defect,” has been the topic of considerable discussion and disagreement. Rather than being synonymous with “flaw,” the Greek term has a connotation that is more closely related to “error.” I think it is best understood in the light of what Aristotle has to say about plot and “the law of probability or necessity.” According to Aristotle, the protagonist in the perfect tragedy would unwittingly bring about his own downfall—not because he is wicked or morally weak, but rather because he does not know enough about the situation. The hamartia’s significance in tragedy is not derived from its moral standing, but rather from the certainty of its repercussions. Because of these two factors, the peripeteia is really a series of self-destructive actions carried out while blind, which result in outcomes diametrically opposed to those intended (a phenomenon known as tragic irony), and the anagnorisis is defined as the acquisition of essential knowledge that was previously lacking.

The third most important factor is thought, which may be discovered “where anything is shown to be or not to be, or where a general maxim is enunciated.” Aristotle says very little about thinking, and the most of what he has to say is concerned with how speeches should reflect a person’s character and personality traits. However, it is reasonable to suppose that this group would also contain what we refer to as the themes of a performance.

The fourth element is diction, which is defined as “the expression of meaning in words” that are suitable and suited to the narrative, the characters, and the conclusion of the tragedy. Among the artistic aspects of tragedy, Aristotle is especially concerned in metaphors, which he describes as follows: “But the greatest thing by far is to have a mastery of metaphor, it is the mark of genius, because to create excellent metaphors requires an eye for resemblances.

The fifth element is the song, or melody, which serves as the musical component of the chorus. Choral odes, according to Aristotle, should be completely incorporated into the play, similar to how an actor would be; choral odes should not be “mere interludes,” but should instead add to the overall coherence of the narrative.

In order of importance, spectacle is the last since it is the least associated with literature. In spite of the fact that Aristotle acknowledges the emotional appeal of spectacle, he contend, the superior poets rely on internal structural elements of the play rather than spectacle to incite pity and fear.

Pity and terror are purified and cleansed towards the conclusion of the tragedy via katharsis. Katharsis is another another Aristotelian word that has sparked a great deal of discussion and controversy. To purge is to reduce anything to a healthy, balanced proportion. Aristotle seems to be using a medical metaphor here, since tragedy elicits the feelings of pity and terror in order to cleanse them of their excess, and so to reduce these passions to a healthy, balanced proportion. As well as the “pleasure” that is appropriate to tragedy, Aristotle speaks of the “aesthetic pleasure” that one receives from pondering the sorrow and terror that are arouses via a carefully crafted work of art, according to what seems to be his meaning.

b) Poet as “a man speaking to men”

Answer: All good poetry is the spontaneous outpouring of strong emotions; however, even though this is true, poems of lasting value have never been produced on a wide range of subjects by anyone other than a man who, in addition to possessing greater than usual “organic sensibility had also thought long and deeply” about the subject matter. In fact, our ideas, which are in fact the general representations of all of our previous emotions, modify and guide our ongoing influxes of emotion, as we find by considering the relationship of these general representatives to one another. The repeating and participation of this act will cause our feelings to become associated with important subjects until, if we are born with a great deal of sensibility, those very habits of mind will be formed that, by following blindly and automatically the impulses of such habits, will describe objects and express sentiments of a nature and in a context that is truly important to men.

In contrast to other forms of expression, poetry does not involve the letting go of emotions and sentiments. In Eliot’s words, “the poet thinks his emotions and feels his ideas,” feelings and thoughts are always in sync with one another. Wordsworth’s personal technique as a poet, in which he allows an emotion or a combination of emotions to settle and develop slowly until they are ready to be delivered, as well as his habit of rewriting his lyrical works, is an example of this concept. The poet’s work, in contrast to the imitative-rationalist aesthetic prevalent in the eighteenth century, is not a lifeless work of art or simple workmanship; rather, it is born of and maintained by a real and honest personal emotion, and it is in this that poetry finds its universal appeal.

Wordsworth outlines three key qualities of a poet that he believes are important. First and foremost, he has extraordinary sensitivity, which allows him to not only experience personally what occurs to him, but also to sense directly what may happen to those around him.

Second, a poet is ‘a man speaking to men,’ which means that poetry is not just a kind of self-indulgence, and so the poet is a social person with a duty on his shoulders. A great poet should be able to correct men’s emotions, to provide them with new compositions of sensations, and to make their feelings more rational, pure, and lasting in their expression.

Third, the poet is gifted with extraordinary powers of imagination, which allows him to be influenced by things that are not physically there as if they were. Wordsworth himself had a very powerful imagination, to the point where the beautiful shapes he had previously seen were ever present in his mind’s eye which could be used to elicit the right emotions and mental states.

Wordsworth considers the poet to be a man who, in addition to possessing a greater than normal organic sensitivity, has also pondered much and profoundly. A competent poet must be able to combine the two characteristics of thinking and emotion in his or her work. Without the other, the first will not function. The poet differs from ordinary individuals not in the type of characteristics he has, but also in the degree to which those qualities are shown.

c) The woman as the ‘second sex’

d) Base-superstructure relationship in Marxist criticism

Answer: When it comes to the base, Marx observes that it changes via a tremendous lot of violence in real history. The explanation for this is straightforward. Marx was well aware of the fact that the ruling elite was putting up a strong fight against the forces of transformation. Great and dramatic changes take place at the base, where the two conflicting classes battle to the death for their own existence. In the superstructure, such violent confrontations do not occur as often. In the words of Marx, “With the alteration of the economic basis, the whole vast superstructure is changed more or less quickly.” The use of the term “transformed” is important because, according to Marx, the modifications in the base are followed by changes in the superstructure. For example, the legal superstructure that legitimises and supports the operation of the new system is a critical component of this process. We can observe that in law, the effects of change may be seen early, and that the law follows the restructured foundation later in the process. However, the situation is different in the matter of philosophy, ideology, or culture. People see the potential of change, as well as its bad and good elements, in philosophy or ideology long before there is a corresponding social upheaval takes place. Additionally, echoes of discontent, grievance, and complaint are mirrored in literature dating back to the events that take place on the base itself. In this sense, all of these superstructures have an impact on the base and increase the intensity of the struggle there rather than being changed by the conflict there. It is important to remember that change must not be taken too literally. Therefore, we must read Marx’s assertion about the superstructure in an entirely different light. The inquiry should be: How can individuals become aware of their conditions of life inside the superstructure of its circumstances of life if the change occurs first at the base? To reiterate, how can individuals get involved in the political superstructure and free themselves from the constraints of the existing base, which has become obsolete and must be replaced in order for the creative forces of mankind to be free to flow in a positive historical direction.

Marx’s views on the connection between the base and the superstructure were only briefly conveyed in his general comments on the subject. Actually, Marx spoke of the connection between the base and the superstructure in basic, straightforward words with the goal of allowing these two aspects of social reality to be grasped in concept, in abstraction. He wanted to make certain that sociologists and activists were aware of the critical importance of the presence of a base. As shown by Marx’s concept of the base, idealist philosophers who indulged in wild speculation were mistaken in their belief that social world was some sort of clay ready to be moulded by human beings according to their desires.

Marx never could emphasise the significance of social transformation at the stage of the mode of its production unless he presented the base as a crucial and very difficult element. The goal, though, is to make a difference.” In order to do this, social reality had to be removed from the purview of philosophers and left in the hands of those who have been the true producers, the proletariat, instead. Nothing significant would happen unless someone took the initiative. While individuals who simply “interpreted” the world stayed in their positions, the world with its whole ruling and influencing basis remained in place to oppress and abuse the working classes of society, as the notion of base was intended. Once this has been acknowledged in principle, it is simple to see that the superstructure, as a domain of human thinking and creativity, interacts with the base in a major way.

e) Patriarchy

3. How are myths and archetypes examined to grasp the significance of twentieth century English writing? Explain. 20

Answer: The myth captures the essence of all Greek literature, including poetry, theatre, narrative, prose, and lyric. The Greek term ‘mythos,’ which simply means “story” However, by the fifth century B.C., the types of tales that have been retained from the very beginning of racial and collective memory of Greek culture were already disconnected from the lives of ordinary Greeks. Legends and stories that have been kept in racial memory via ceremonial reenactments on religious days, as well as through depictions in sculpture, pottery, temples , special inscriptions, shields, vases, sacred items, and other types of artefacts, such as toys.

Legends and stories that have been kept in racial memory via ceremonial reenactments on religious days, as well as through depictions in sculpture, pottery, temples , special inscriptions, shields, vases, sacred items, and other types of artefacts, such as toys.  In today’s world, there are many different views on what myths are for and what practical value they have in a society. All of these interpretations are ways of looking at the history and literature (oral and written) of non-European cultures such as African, native American, and Asian cultures, as well as the ancient Mediterranean through the eyes of the Euro-American nations which have ended up losing their own myths and faith in the religious cosmology of Christianity, as well as the ancient Mediterranean. In all of these approaches of deriving meaning from myths, a fundamental methodolgy is followed, according to which all stories are reduced to a symbolic manner of expressing a single concept. In this way, myths are viewed by moderns as narratives depicting a conflict between natural elements, or as symbols of a seasonal cycle, or the seasonal cycle of fertility and decay, or the seasonal cycle of desire, obstruction, fulfilment, partial satiation, or frustration, or as symbols of racial waves of migration of linguistic or religious communities, or as symbols of a clash of civilisations, among others. What ever theorising about myths may be in our time, ancient societies utilised myths to control the lives of individuals who had a strong emotional attachment to the gods, goddesses, heavenly beings, wonderful animals; heroes and kings; as well as their ancestors, who were depicted in myths.

A wide variety of interpretations are available for literature, and there are many distinct approaches to literature, one of which is the archetypal approach. The word “archetype” refers to a unique concept or pattern of something, from which others are inspired to create duplicates. Using an archetypal method, one may examine and analyse a book by considering the cultural patterns that have been implicated in it; these cultural traditions are centered on the mythology and rituals of a particular race, nationality, or social group.

In recent years, this kind of critical approach to a book has grown in popularity among literary critics. It is James George Frazer and Carl Gustav Jung who are regarded as the two most important experts who have made significant contributions to the development of the archetypal method. Frazer was a social anthropologist, and his work The Golden Bough is a study of magic, religion, and mythology of many races, all of which may be found in different cultures. Jung was a psychologist who was affiliated with Sigmund Freud. Jung’s idea of “collective consciousness” is a significant part of his work. A civilised man “unconsciously” retains the ideas, conceptions, and ideals of life treasured by his distant ancestors, according to Jung, and so ideas are embodied in a society’s or race’s mythology and ritualism. Myths have been incorporated into literary works by creative authors, and literary critics examine texts in search of “mythological patterns.” Archetypal criticism is the term used to describe this type of critical examination of a book. TS Eliot has utilised mythological motifs in his creative works, and “The Waste Land” is an excellent illustration of how he has done so. As a result, Northrop Frye’s article does not focus on any specific myth or legendary figure in a work; rather, he offers an examination of “mythical patterns” that have been employed by authors throughout history.

Archetypal critique is a broad word that encompasses a wide range of disciplines. Every step of the interpretation of a book is based on “a particular type of academic organisation,” and the efforts of numerous experts are put forth at every stage of the process. In order to “clean up” the text, an editor is required; a rhetorician examines the speed of the storey; a philologist examines the meaning of words; and a literary social historian investigates the development of mythologies and rituals Under the auspices of archetypal criticism, the efforts of all of these experts are brought together to analyse a single text. In the field of archetypal criticism, the work of a literary anthropologist is significant. In an archetypal study of Hamlet, an anthropologist traces the origins of the play back to the Hamlet tale recorded by Saxo, a thirteenth-century Danish historian, in his work Danes, Gesta Danorum, which means Danes, Gesta Danorum in English. His research also leads him to believe that nature tales, which were popular at the time of the Norman Conquest, were the inspiration for the play. As a result of archetypal critique, an anthropologist conducts a rudimentary investigation into the roots of Hamlet.

The Myth’s Four Phases are as follows:

Every myth seems to have a core importance, and the storey in a myth revolves on a character who may be a deity or a demi-god, a superhuman creature, or a legendary figure of some kind. According to Frazer and Jung, the centre character or core importance is the most essential element in the formation of a myth, and this is a viewpoint shared by a large number of authors. Frye divides myths into four types, which are as follows:

a) The phases of dawn, spring, and conception. There are tales that deal with the origin of a hero, his resuscitation and resurrection, as well as the overcoming of the forces of darkness and death, among other things. It is in this storey that subordinate figures like as the father and mother are first presented. Such stories are the prototypes of romance and rhapsodic poetry, as well as of lyric poetry.

b) The zenith, summer, and marriage or victory phases are all a part of the cycle. There are stories of apotheosis the action of being elevated to the status of a deity), of holy marriage, and of entering Paradise that are associated with this period. The partner and the bride are the two characters that serve as subordinates in these tales. Such stories are the prototypes of humour, pastoralism, and the idyll, among other things.

c) The sunset, autumn, and death phases are the third and last phases. These are the myths that deal with the downfall of a hero, the death of a deity, violent death, sacrifice, and the hero’s exile from the rest of society. The traitor and the siren are the characters who serve as subordinates. Tragic and elegiac myths are prototypes of tragedy and elegy, respectively.

d) Fourth, the period of darkness, cold, and desolation. There are myths that relate with the victory of these forces. For example, stories about flooding, the return of chaos, and the downfall of the hero are all instances of this period. The beast and the witches are the secondary characters in this story, and these tales serve as prototypes for satirical storytelling.

These are the four kinds of myths identified by Frye, and they may be found in a variety of various types of works produced by a variety of different authors. Indeed, they serve as the foundation for a plethora of outstanding works of literature.

A quest myth, which was believed to have evolved from the four kinds of myths listed above, is discussed by Northrop Frye in relation to the four categories of myths described above. The quest-myth is a kind of myth in which the hero is on a search for truth or anything else, and this type of tale appears in all faiths. When reading the last section of The Waste Land, the Messiah storey is revealed to be a quest myth for the Holy Grail (a Christian myth). In order to arrive at an acceptable reading of texts, archetypal critics must carefully analyse the myths included within the sacred books of all faiths. A critic may descend from an examination of mythic archetypes to conduct a study of genres, and from the study of genres, he can descend even farther to the explication of a work in terms of myth. The deductive technique of analysis is the term used to describe this kind of disagreement in criticism. In other words, the critic progresses from a general truth (a myth) to an explication of a specific truth (the truth of why a character acts in a certain way) in a piece of writing. In this manner, a critic may trace the development of a play, a song, or an epic back to its mythological origins. Moreover, according to Frye, virtually all genres in all of literature have sprung solely from the quest-myth. It is the responsibility of an archetypal critic to dismantle myths and determine the meaning and message of a piece of art.

Northrop Frye has proven the legitimacy of the archetypal approach to literary criticism, as well as its significance in the explication of a work, among the many methods to literary criticism. Criticism, like works of literature, is a creative endeavour, and an archetypal critic is one who finds the meaning of a text as well as the motivations of a character through investigation. There is no such thing as an autonomous human effort, therefore the job of an archetypal critic encompasses both formalistic critique (also known as structural criticism) and historical criticism. Both J.G. Frazer and Carl Gustav Jung brought new perspectives in archetypal or mythological criticism, and Frye has removed the barriers to a text’s enjoyment that previously existed. According to Frye, both the inductive approach and the techniques applied are useful instruments in the field of mythological criticism, and none can be used in isolation from the other. If one approach explains a text by deriving a general fact from a specific instance, the other method explains the text the opposite way around. Neither approach is complete without the other, and archetypal criticism would be incomplete if one is not used to its full potential. In literary criticism, the use of archetypal approaches to texts has helped to the development of a methodical and complete understanding of the subject matter.

4. What is Structuralism? How is it helpful in grasping the appeal and intent of a literary text? 20

Answer: Structuralism can be defined as a conceptual and methodological approach to defining and analysing a range of objects of inquiry. These objects of inquiry includes cultures, economics, language, literature, mythology, politics, and societies, to name a few examples. The structuralist approach to prose literature offers a new and creative framework for analysing prose literature. Some of the outcomes of literary structuralism include the development of the fiction reader’s role, the use of storey as a tool to serve for language, and the use of storey not only to represent concrete reality but also to develop new, contextual, and pluralistic complexities in language spaces.

Early twentieth-century Russian formalists, like as Ferdinand de Saussure, helped to establish the foundations for structuralist theory in its contemporary application. Words in poetry, in the eyes of the formalists, did not only serve as signifiers, but also as signifieds, as they were also signifieds. As defined by formalists, literary works were considered to be functional systems, composed of devices whose value was decided by the worth of other devices that were played off against them. Furthermore, they considered literature to be a kind of language, with each particular work serving as an instance of parole. The structuralists of the 1960s and 1970s in France took these linguistic parallels a step further by applying them to other languages.

However, if “structuralism” can be used to describe both “structures” and their functioning, it may be traced all the way back to Plato and Aristotle. Because of the character of poetic mimicry, according to Plato, it was a servile and untruthful speech, both in terms of substance and in terms of structure, and as a result, it deserved to be expelled from his realm. His focus on the logical and ethical structure of poetry, on the other hand, is what is known as Aristotelian “structuralism.” In terms of the former, he thought that a poem should have a beginning, a middle, and an end that are logically linked to one another, resulting in an organic whole at the conclusion of the process. Specifically, when it comes to ethical form, the Greek rhetorician argued that the tragic hero should be a man whose demise is not the product of his vice or depravity, but rather the result of his mistake or weakness. In this respect, Horace may be regarded a structuralist as well as anybody else. Longinus was unconcerned with the formal aspects of poetry, and sublimity was just the echo of a vast spirit in his eyes.

The structuralism of Renaissance literature may have its origins in the organisation of a society that was highly class conscious, as evidenced, for example, by the tripartite dramatic poetry that dramatised the English hierarchical society, a society in which tragedy was reserved for the upper classes, comedy for the middle classes, and farce for the lower classes. And decorum, which was much required in writing at the time, meant that each genre should be suitable for the class of society that it reflected.

The Romantic poet-critics were outraged by the Neo-classical poetic “rules” and “decorum,” believing that they would artificialize the poetry and make it unnatural. If, on the other hand, one recognises the four prominent components that were at work in a poetic production of the Romantic period, one must acknowledge the presence of structuralist tendencies in the literature of that time period as well.

By the period of Hippolyte Taine, a French critic and historian, literary structuralism had already started to take hold in the minds of readers. Taine approached literature in a scientific way, similar to how a biologist examines his specimen.   He asserted that poetry alters tradition, but that the poet’s thinking stays unaltered in relation to that tradition. Eliot uses an example to help the reader understand the concept of depersonalization in poets’ work.

As a result, the term “early structuralism” used in the current article should be regarded as distinct from the term “mid-century structuralism.” The first refers to the sum total of all of the elements that go into the outward shape and structure of a literary work, but also the interests and curiosities of literature instructors and students. The structure of poetry, in this sense, was probably primarily an outward element of poetry instead of an interior feature of poetry. With regard to  structure, the problems of genre, metrical patterns, and rhyme scheme were handled individually.

With this development, form and structure in a piece of prose fiction were regarded to be the sum total of the work’s setting, action, narrative, and characterisation, among other elements. This type of structure was intimately linked to the outward form of a piece of verbal art, that would be viewed not as dynamic and creative, but rather as static and mechanical in its presentation. One of its functions was to provide a base for literary scholars to analyse a piece of work in order to develop theories about it, and another function was to serve as a threshold through which literary students might peer into the work via its many windows.

In the context of the social and linguistic crises, structuralism is best understood as both a symptom of and a response to that crisis. It diverts attention away from studying the socio-political consequences of language’s referential function and toward investigating the structure of language. According to Barthes, few actions could be more socio-politically important in the sense of expressing the crisis and demonstrating structuarlists’ incapacity to deal with it. However, this is an ironic gesture.

Although Structuralism is exclusively concerned with the language system and establishes a depth study of the common signs we use in our everyday lives, it is not a purely theoretical approach to keeping society and politics at bay. Instead, it is a practical approach to keeping society and politics at bay. It serves to draw our attention to their ability to change through time, as well as to attempt to understand the characteristics of the framework within which such changes occur.

5. Postmodernism lays special emphasis on identity and difference. Discuss. 20

Answer: A fascinating aspect of the word ‘postmodernism’ is that on the one hand it refers to anything that came after modernism as an inevitable consequence of it, but on the other it refers to the sheer presence of modernism as a negative and illogical category. Thinkers and literary figures of influence Lying in the nineteen eighty and nineties was too language aware, and words were utilised to indicate more than they were intended to denote in most situations. Consider the term ‘postmodernism,’ which refers to something more than “after” or “later,” something more than just the “next phase” of a previously existent trend in which the term ‘post’ is used. According to what we have learned, the term “modern” became widely popular in the early twentieth century, despite the fact that it was the subject of lengthy and intense discussions in the eighteenth century. When it comes to things and events, postmodernism likes to focus on the external picture rather than making inferences or proposing hidden meanings that are connected with the interior of the objects or events. It was also a pejorative term at the time, with connections to the behaviour style of a newly emerging bourgeoisie. Traditional ideals and established standards were associated with the aristocracy, whereas “modern” represented something different: something new, rootless, unreliable, erratic and unpredictable. Modern was given an appealing tint of current, actual, and present by the early twentieth century, which resounded in the realm of actuality. The term therefore included the whole existentialist movement, which was devoted to the real and concrete, as well as its predecessors.

When dealing with postmodernism, one of the most difficult things to do is differentiate it from modernism. Contemporary modernism was defined as both a broad tendency that covered the course of life over many decades and a perspective that saw abstract ideas of behaviour manifested in particular circumstances. Modernism was a school of thought. From around the nineteen seventies forward, cultural-academic institutions in the western bourgeois world began to be cautious when it came to the term’modernism,’ since the term represented a theory, no matter how nuanced and vague, that allowed the interpretation to gain entrance into a phenomena.

If it is considered a doctrine, it may either be accepted, controverted, or rejected. The discussion helped pave the way for an alternative paradigm that is more logical, consistent and reality-centered than the one that existed before to this argument. Modernism as a ‘ism,’ interpreted in structuralist-poststructuralist terms, generated a palpable critique of the Cold War, competitiveness, and technology-centred approaches, and became increasingly difficult or inconvenient for a system that thrived on the cynical pursuit of consumerism and crass profiteering.

In ‘postmodernism,’ the clever use of the prefix ‘post’ enabled a newly minted philosopher to reject or negate everything that had occurred previously and declare that we had arrived at a point of ‘post-progress, post-history, and ‘post-reason,’ i.e., a realm where consistency, connectedness, general truth or truths had all lost their validity. Postmodernism questioned the concepts of time and space, as well as the notions of a past, present, and future, as well as the idea that various cultures had unique patterns of behaviour to be observed and understood.

“Post” is not just a descriptive term, but is rather a denial of all existence and history up to the point of ‘modernity,’ or the point of “modernism.” In many ways, postmodern artists and theorists continue the kinds of experimentation that we can see in modernist works, like the use of identity, joke, sarcasm, fragmentation, generic mixing, vagueness,  and the break – down between high and low forms of expression, among others. Thus, postmodern artistic aspects is seen as an augmentation of modernist experimentation; however, some scholars prefer to portray the transition into postmodernism as a more radical break, one that is the result of new ways to represent the world, such as television, film particularly after the popularisation of colour and sound, and the computer, among other innovations. However, some critics believe that World War II marked a radical break from modernity, due to the horrors of nazism and other modernist revolutions such as communism and Maoism that were made evident at the time.

A postmodernist phase has engulfed the western bourgeois world, and audio-visual media have been used to call into question the very notions of inequality, deprivation, and injustice, which are merely words that mean something only when they are used in conjunction with equality, availability, and justice, respectively. According to postmodernism, the latter set is susceptible to being called into question since it does not relate to any universally accepted norm of judgement. This is the reasoning of the deconstructionist, who is always questioning everything in order to proclaim the dominance of illogicality and anarchy as the only legitimate way of thinking. Postmodernists and deconstructionists believe that the essence of truth is found in a person’s perception of a reality that may signify something completely different to another individual. It is difficult to decode or interpret any general message in a text or vocal structure when there is no theoretical connection between two people.

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