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In this revealing study of the links among literature, rhetoric, and democracy, Rosa A. Eberly explores the public debate generated by amateur and professional readers about four controversial literary works: two that were censored in the United States and two that created conflict because they were not censored. In "Citizen Critics" Eberly compares the outrage sparked by the publication of James Joyce's "Ulysses" and Henry Miller's "Tropic of Cancer" with the relative quiescence that greeted the much more violent and sexually explicit content of Bret Easton Ellis's "American Psycho" and Andrea Dworkin's "Mercy". Through a close reading of letters to the editor, reviews, media coverage, and court cases, Eberly shows how literary critics and legal experts defused censorship debates by shifting the focus from content to aesthetics and from social values to publicity. By asserting their authority to pass judgments - thus denying the authority of citizen critics - these professionals effectively removed the discussion from literary public spheres. A passionate advocate for treating reading as a public and rhetorical enterprise rather than solely as a private one, Eberly suggests the potential impact a work of literature may have on the social polity if it is brought into public forums for debate rather than removed to the exclusive rooms of literary criticism. Eberly urges educators to use their classrooms as protopublic spaces in which students can learn to make the transition from private reader to public citizen.
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"A well-written text that contribues much to public sphere studies. It offers needed case studies of actual citizen deliberation, which reveals how people may interact across multiple publics. Focusing on literary works, Citizen Critics connects cultural texts to political discourse, showing how cultural texts need not induce passivity in their audiences but instead may activate a political consciousness." -- Robert Asen, Augmentation and Advocacy ADVANCE PRAISE "Citizen Critics is clearly an important book, valuable for what it contributes to literary history, cultural criticism, and rhetorical studies, valuable for what it offers to potential citizen critics in and out of the academy, and, perhaps above all, valuable for what it contributes toward the regeneration of a public discourse in a truly participatory democracy." -- Stephen Mailloux, author of Reception Histories: Rhetoric, Pragmatism, and American Cultural Politics
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Book Description University of Illinois Press, Urbana, Illinios, 2000. Hard Cover. Condition: Very Good. No Jacket. First Edition. O4 - A first edition (complete numberline) hardcover book in very good condition that has some light discoloration and shelf wear with no dust jacket. The history of Communications, Robert W. McChesney and John C. Nerone, editors. 9.25"x6.25", 199 pages. Satisfaction Guaranteed. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Seller Inventory # ec45574
Book Description University of Illinois Press. Hardcover. Condition: VERY GOOD. Light rubbing wear to cover, spine and page edges. Very minimal writing or notations in margins not affecting the text. Possible clean ex-library copy, with their stickers and or stamp(s). Seller Inventory # 2866650999
Book Description University of Illinois Press. Hardcover. Condition: VERY GOOD. Light rubbing wear to cover, spine and page edges. Very minimal writing or notations in margins not affecting the text. Possible clean ex-library copy, with their stickers and or stamp(s). Seller Inventory # 2896047732
Book Description University of Illinois Press, 2000. Hardcover. Condition: Used: Good. Ex-library with usual stickers and stamps. Very carefully read. Cover has lightly worn edges. No dust jacket. Seller Inventory # 7Z-GQK0-MRW6
Book Description University of Illinois Press, 2000. Hardcover. Condition: Used: Good. Seller Inventory # SONG025202513X