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literary history Line breaks: lit¦er|ary his|tory

Entry from British & World English dictionary

Definition of literary history in English:


[mass noun]
The history of the treatment of, and references to, a particular subject in literature: lesbian literary history
More example sentences
  • Questions about the vexed relationship between literary criticism and literary history persist.
  • It also occupied a huge space in the newly developed disciplines of literary criticism and literary history.
  • This is one of a number of textual allusions which, paradoxically, give the authority of literary history to Sam's historical investigations.


literary historian
Example sentences
  • He suggests that contemporary literary historians have misunderstood Romanticism.
  • I got a very bad grade on a paper I wrote for a Chaucer seminar in which I argued, against prominent literary historians, that Chaucer had indeed relied on the work of rhetoricians such as Geoffrey de Vinsauf when he composed his Troilus.
  • Kazin was among the early literary historians to see the book as a departure from standard documentary practice, associating Let Us Now Praise Famous Men, ‘as a work of great moral intensity,’ with Faulkner's fiction.
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