Samuel Taylor Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" Reader-Response Criticism
Homework Questions: 97:
How, according to Adena Rosmarin, is a literary text like an
What basic goals do reader-response critics share?
What techniques do they utilize to achieve those goals?
What is formalism?
What does it mean to blur "the boundaries between reader and
and object" (99)?
What is the "affective fallacy" (99)?
What is "the formalist hegemony" (99)? Why does Stanley Fish
problem with it?
Explain Wolfgang Iser's concept of "gaps" (100).
What is an "informed" or "intended reader"(qtd. in Murfin 102)?
What is an "implied reader"(qtd. in Murfin 102)? How is it
from a "competent reader" (qtd. in Murfin 102)?
Explain: "Through a vocabulary focused on a text's manipulation
Fish was especially effective in extending and diversifying the
practices that continued business as usual within literary criticism"
in Murfin 103).
What are "interpretive communities" (qtd. in Murfin 104)?
How does "reader-oriented" criticisim differ from
Explain: "A society's ideological assumptions about gender,
class determine the way in which artistic works are perceived and
What does Frances Ferguson consider to be "the major issue" in
poem (qtd. in Murfin 108)?
Other Discussion Questions: 101:
What is "rhetorical presentation" (qtd. in Murfin 101)?
What is "dialectical presentation" (qtd. in Murfin 101)?
Explain: "By redefining meaning as an event rather than as
inherent in the text, the reader-response critics . . . locate meaning
in time: the reader's time" (101).
What are "subjectivists" (qtd. in Murfin 103)?
What is "free indirect discourse" (105)?
What is "the resisting reader" (qtd. in Murfin 105)?
What is "the (male twentieth-century first world) gay reader"
in Murfin 105)?
How does reader-oriented theory compare with feminist, gender,
How does it compare with new historicism and cultural criticism?