Criticism is a literary technique which means to critically evaluate a literary work or a political or philosophical theory in detail. A criticism can be a critical essay, an article evaluating a literary piece, or a review such as a summary that identifies the central topic, raises questions, takes note of theoretical and experimental approaches, and reviews the meaning of the results. Moreover, the purpose is to highlight both the shortcomings and the strengths of a literary play or a literary piece.Furthermore, a critical assessment or evaluation requires sufficient knowledge of the subject.
Examples of criticism in literature
Example 1: The Guardian (by Philip Hope -Wallace)
In The Guardian, the critic Philip Hope-Wallace has portrayed Beckett's play Waiting as "inexplicably and deliberately greasy" for Godot. He also claimed that the piece "bored some people acutely. [While] others found it a funny and poetic enigma." Godot might be a god, and the tramp's clothes are like chaplinesque zanies in a circus. Both speak futile side conversations such as music hall exchanges. This play acutely bored the audience, while others consider it a poetic and witty puzzle. Finally, he calls the play a dramatic void. It has no plot, climax, denouement, beginning, middle and end.
Example # 2: The Washington Post (By The Washington Post)
A famous writer, Jonathan Yardley, offers a comprehensive analysis of F. Scott Fitzgerald's popular novel, The Great Gatsby in The Washington Post. He considers the novel to be a great achievement in Fitzgerald's career. It is his masterpiece and it seems that no other American novel could ever come close to his literary art.
This novel is very popular, and all of its passages are famous, so there is no need to go back to its details and family background. Fitzgerald has written it with unusual subtlety and has held that tone throughout the novel. In the end, he says that this novel is “the most beautiful, compelling, and true in all of American literature. Then he says: "If of all the books in our country I could only have one, The Great Gatsby, that would be it."
Example # 3: Hamlet: Poem Unlimited (by Harold Bloom)
In his book, Hamlet: Poem Unlimited, Harold Bloom declares that William Shakespeare's Hamlet is "unlimited", "genderless", because his greatness "... competes only with the writings of the world. " This astonishing meaning cannot come from a play, which deals with tendentious and politicized things.
Bloom abandons the idea that Prince Hamlet's double shock over the death of his father and his mother's second marriage has produced a drastic change in Hamlet. "Something in Hamlet dies before the play begins." In fact, the central theme or idea of this work is "Hamlet's consciousness of his own consciousness, unlimited from him but at war with itself." Thus, the play is about awakening self-awareness, and Hamlet struggles with "his desire for him to get to the end of the performance."
Example # 4: The Daily Telegraph (by Victoria Lambert)
Victoria Lambert, in The Daily Telegraph, writes Critical Reviews of her on Jane Austen's novel, Pride and Prejudice. She describes the novel as surprisingly comforting as well as iconoclastic. It's a great story that challenges people's perceptions and also draws a line through their thoughts and the female story.
Certainly there is a treat of Georgian grace, a world in which we can solve problems through an invitation to a ball, a new dress, and delicious gossip. The social life of the Hampshire rectory, its complex social mores, obsessions with money and class, its picnics and parities draw readers - especially women - to a point of obsession. Critics appreciate Austen's general account of the way money runs society. She also admits Austen's ability to detail the human heart and keep her literary pulse racing.
Function of the criticism
Critics vary widely and range from reviews of books, as these reviews can determine whether a book will be popular or not, to rhetorical analysis of articles and works of art. Its advantage is that, despite negative criticism and reviews, many books are gaining commercial success. Sometimes a critic serves as a scientific detective who authenticates unknown books and unearths masterpieces could act as the most fundamental criticism and make literary pieces known to the public.
Furthermore, a criticism can antagonize the author. Many authors do not believe that literature needs investigators, and proponents are not happy to hear that their works are imitative, incomplete, or have unintended meanings. However, most of the reviews are useful as they help improve the writers' works.
Popular Literary Devices
- Ad Hominem
- Deus Ex Machina
- Double Entendre
- Flash Forward
- Half Rhyme
- Internal Rhyme
- Line Break
- Non Sequitur
- Pathetic Fallacy
- Poetic Justice
- Point of View
- Red Herring
- Tragic Flaw