Stephen Greenblatt and New Historicism

While he was teaching at the University of California, Berkeley, Greenblatt helped to found a journal called Representations, in which some of the earlier important New Historicist criticism appeared. As mentioned earlier, however, it was his introduction to The Power of Forms in the English Renaissance (1982) that spurred the growth of the New Historicism.… Read More Stephen Greenblatt and New Historicism

Foucault’s Influence on New Historicism

The anti-establishment ethos of New Historicism wasprofoundly influenced by Foucault‘s theories of Power/Knowledge and Discourse. Foucault observed that the discourse of an era brings into being concepts, oppositions and hierarchies, which are products and propagators of power, and these determine what is “knowledge”, “truth” and “normal” at a given time. Drawing on Jeremy Bentham‘s notion… Read More Foucault’s Influence on New Historicism

New Historicism’s Deviation from Old Historicism

New Historicism envisages and practises a mode of study where the literary text and the non-literary cotext are given “equal weighting”, whereas old historicism considers history as a “background” of facts to the “foreground” of literature. While Old historicism follows a hierarchical approach by creating a historical framework and placing the literary text within it,… Read More New Historicism’s Deviation from Old Historicism