Discussion 8

Read chapter 3 in Critical Theory Today.

Address one of the questions below with a 300-word response.
1. Does the work reinforce (intentionally or not) capitalist, imperialist, or
classist values? If so, then the work may be said to have a capitalist, impe‐
rialist, or classist agenda, and it is the critic’s job to expose and condemn
this aspect of the work.

2. How might the work be seen as a critique of capitalism, imperialism, or
classism? That is, in what ways does the text reveal, and invite us to con‐
demn, oppressive socioeconomic forces (including repressive ideologies)? If
a work criticizes or invites us to criticize oppressive socioeconomic forces,
then it may be said to have a Marxist agenda.

3. Does the work in some ways support a Marxist agenda but in other ways
(perhaps unintentionally) support a capitalist, imperialist, or classist
agenda? In other words, is the work ideologically conflicted?

4. How does the literary work reflect (intentionally or not) the socioeconomic
conditions of the time in which it was written and/or the time in which it is
set, and what do those conditions reveal about the history of class struggle?

5. How might the work be seen as a critique of organized religion? That is,
how does religion function in the text to keep a character or characters
from realizing and resisting socioeconomic oppression?

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