The Penguin Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory (Penguin Dictionary) by J. A. Cuddon
Part of the Reference relaunch
The Penguin Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory is firmly established as a key work of reference in the complex and varied field of literary criticism. Now in its fourth edition, it remains the most comprehensive and accessible work of its kind, and is invaluable for student, teachers and general readers alike.
From the Publisher
Some sample entries:
(L folium, `leaf') Made by folding a printer's sheet once only, to form two folios or four pages. It also refers to editions of Shakespeare's plays published after his death: the First Folio appeared in 1623. There were three other in 1632, 1663 and 1685. See DUODECIMO; LEAF; OCTAVO; QUARTO.
(Gk `reckoning together') Deduction, from two propositions containing three terms of which one appears in both, of a conclusion that is true if they are true. A stock example is: All men are mortal; Greeks are men; so all Greeks are mortal. `Men' is the middle term. `Mortal', the second term in the conclusion, is the major term and the premise in which it occurs is the major premise. `Greeks' is the minor term and its premise the minor premise.
A concept and theory of dramatic presentation which developed in Russia and Germany in the early years of the 20th C. It was strongly opposed to naturalism (q.v.) and was in favour of the principle that theatre is theatre and is a representation of life - and is not life itself. Nevertheless, naturalistic drama (q.v.), like the well-made play (q.v.), has continued to be popular.
From the Back Cover
Some sample entries:
'Changga (K 'long poem'). A 'popular' Korean verse form, usually of ten or more lines or stanzas with refrains. A frequent theme was love'.
Leitmotif (G Leitmotiv, 'leading motif'). A term coined by Hans von Wolzugen to designate a musical theme associated throughout a whole work with a particular object, charcater or emotion, as so often in Wagner's operas. Thomas Mann used it as a literary term to denote a recurrent theme (q.v) or unit. It is occasionally used as a literary term in the same sense that Mann intended, and also in a broader sense to refer to an author's favourite themes: for example, the hunted man and betrayal in the novels of Graham Greene'.
'Maximum scene technique. A jargon term for stream of consciousness (q.v) technique'.
About the Author
J.A. Cuddon was a novelist, travel writer and academic. He died in 1996. The work of finishing off the fourth edition fell to C.E. Preston of Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge.