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Date of Award

11-1971

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Philosophy

Supervisor

G. Madison

Language

English

Abstract

In this thesis I am concerned to reveal the limitations of both the theory and the practice of contemporary Anglo-American literary criticism. In the first part of the thesis I try to show to what extent these limitations have been determined by prevailing "Cartesian" interpretations of man and human nature. In the second part of the thesis I introduce Heidegger's phenomenological interpretation of man as an alternative to Cartesianism. I suggest that an approach to literature grounded in this understanding of man would not be subject to the same limitations as one based on traditional Cartesianism. In the third part of the thesis I try to substantiate this claim concretely by exploring some of Heidegger's themes in greater detail and by tracing their relationship to literature.

McMaster University Library

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