Paul Hernadi
Beyond Genre: New Directions in Literary Classification
Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press, 1972 (224 pages)

Publisher's presentation: A survey and evaluation of more than sixty modern concepts of genre and their predecessors are offered in this sophisticated and comprehensive study. The author discusses the views of a wide range of European and American critics and outlines his own polycentric approach to literary classification - a theory of literature "beyond genre."

Professor Hernadi describes, compares, and interrelates prevailing contemporary ideas about genre and, with frequent references to Plato, Aristotle, Hegel, and other major figures of the critical tradition, places them in familiar contexts. Adorno, Barthes, Booth, Burke, Crane, Croce, Eliot, Frye, Ingarden, Langer, Lubbock, Lukacs, Sartre, and Staiger are among the theorists he discusses.

Showing full awareness of the theoretical horizon against which recent genre criticism operates, he provides in this study an eminently clear and sensible treatment of a difficult and much-abused subject. As a result, his book is a contribution to both literary theory and the history of criticism.
Paul Hernadi is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of California, Santa Barbara.


Maintained by Francis F. Steen, Communication Studies, University of California Los Angeles