Chapter

The Monks and the Giants: Textual and Bibliographical Studies and the Interpretation of Literary Works

Jerome J. McGann

in The Beauty of Inflections

Published in print August 1988 | ISBN: 9780198117506
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191670961 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198117506.003.0003

Series: Clarendon Paperbacks

The Monks and the Giants: Textual and Bibliographical Studies and the Interpretation of Literary Works

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The first chapter demonstrates the fundamental importance of textual studies to hermeneutics generally and to the specific act of criticism in particular. It assumes that literary study surrendered some of its most powerful interpretive tools when it allowed textual criticism and bibliography to be regarded as ‘preliminary’ rather than integral to the study of literary work. It argues that the non-integral view of textual criticism and bibliography is historically explicable. It also attempts both an exposition of this view of textual criticism and bibliography as well as a critique of its limits.

Keywords: hermeneutics; literary criticism; literary studies; textual criticism; bibliography

Chapter.  8342 words. 

Subjects: Literary Theory and Cultural Studies

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