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By Douglas Robinson

Drawing jointly the estrangement theories of Viktor Shklovsky and Bertolt Brecht with Leo Tolstoy's concept of an infection, Douglas Robinson experiences the ways that shared evaluative impact regulates either literary familiarity―convention and tradition―and glossy ideas of alienation, depersonalization, and malaise.

This booklet starts off with assumptions, either taken from Tolstoy's past due aesthetic treatise What Is artwork? (1898): that there's a malaise in tradition, and that literature's strength to "infect" readers with the ethical values of the writer is a potential treatment for this malaise. Exploring those principles of estrangement in the contexts of prior, modern, and later severe idea, Robinson argues that Shklovsky and Brecht persist with Tolstoy of their efforts to struggle depersonalization by way of imbuing readers with the transformative suggestions of collectivized feeling. Robinson's somatic method of literature deals a strong replacement to depersonalizing structuralist and poststructuralist theorization with no easily backing out into conservative rejection and reaction.

Both a comparative learn of Russian and German literary-theoretical heritage and an insightful exam of the somatics of literature, this groundbreaking paintings presents a deeper realizing of the way literature impacts the reader and provides a brand new point of view on present-day difficulties in poststructuralist ways to the human condition.

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