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How Critical Hermeneutics And Descriptive Sociology Disavow Traditional Humanist Categories

2718 words - 11 pages

An examination of Humanist Hermeneutics in Literary Studies- the practice of close reading- but from a distance presents a room for relation between Literary Studies and other disciplines. Such practices lead to possibilities for renewed interdisciplinary exchange. Viewed within the framework of present day social constructionist theory or simply post- theory, the current essay Close but not Deep: Literary Ethics and the Descriptive Turn show how both Critical Hermeneutics and Descriptive Sociology disavow Traditional Humanist categories. This act reduces the singularity, canonization and the isolation of the text.
Although, it is probably true that the key Humanist Values always remain active and serviceable in Literary Studies. A belief in the potential Aesthetics and Ethical force of Literature is apparent in the work of critics like Cleanth Brooks, Lionel Trilling and others. It is not uncommon to find the ethical value inside the text and into the activity of the critic. The richness of human experiences within a text can be understood through philosophical hermeneutics on one hand and its communicative situation on the other. The considerate axis is on the exhaustive centrality of ethical demands which remains paramount to the practices of literary interpretation today. The specter of Descriptive Turn is perennial to get an access to both otherness and a message that text stipulates in an inverse form (looking at, from the other side of the situation).
“… Interpretive practices borrowed from Marxism and Psychoanalysis, Structuralism and Post structuralism and Semiotics and Deconstruction has displaced the individual and consciousness from the centre of inquiry, shifting attention to the culture of language, desire or economic capital” (372), stated by Heather Love in her essay Close but not Deep: Literary Ethics and the Descriptive Turn
The purpose of this paper is to present such facts, demonstrate their intentions, and also in the process to show the psychological depth and linguistic richness
“… defined by the tension between demystification and what Ricoeur calls the ‘Restoration of meaning’” (Love 387)
Heather Love focuses attention on how the ideologies and the practices of close reading are entangled. Now the key tension emerges is the various schools of thoughts that are critical of Humanism undermine such critique at the level of method by re inscribing “ Humanist Values” by making close reading as practice. Heather Love offers to absolve the title of the essay firstly, by taking to task the close reading of the text and assisting the sociological modes of engagement by focusing her attention on historical intricacies. In order to establish her argument she incorporate works of certain sociologists, anthropologists and philosophers such as
“… Latour’s actor-network-theory and his refusal of distinction between human and nonhuman actors. Goffman and his central analytic category, the “situation”; I suggest that an...

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