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The Language of the Revolution

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Mar. 3rd, 2009 | 06:25 pm

It would seem that talking about Marxist Literary Criticism would be really engaging and interesting, because there is so much written about it, but in a classroom setting that just doesn't turn out to be true. For some reasons these discussions always degenerate into the most petty criticisms of Marxist theory and never end up being applicable to literature. First, if you've made it this far, you should have some basic idea of the outline of Marxist theory. Wasting an hour defining not only "Commodity Fetish" and "Alienation" but also "the Bourgeoisie" and "the Proletariat" is annoying and pointless. Second, nearly all of us here are not Marxists communists, so we really don't need to hear your annoying political screed about Ayn Rand. Third, making assertions against Marxist theory that we've already talked about only reveals that you didn't do the reading last time. Your poor rehash of the Wittig's pointing out that Marx may have been blind to sexism is not interesting like it was when we discussed it last week. Fourth, in conjunction with the second point, in this class it's a lot more interesting if you actually apply these ideas to literature, since it's a very influential current of contemporary literary criticism instead of talking about only politics.

Also, Sophocles, Plato, Trotsky, triumvirate, bourgeoisie and aesthetic are probably words whose pronunciations you should look up before you start giving a presentation.

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Comments {2}

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from: chahn
date: Mar. 4th, 2009 08:35 pm (UTC)

How do you mispronounce Trotsky? The only thing I can think of is making the o short, and I would probably let that pass without comment.

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from: samchuck
date: Mar. 4th, 2009 09:34 pm (UTC)

Well, first you stop and say that you're not sure how to pronounce it, then when you try to add an extra syllable. "Troh-tet-ski".

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