Some Dictionaries of Literary Theory and Related Areas
Lowell Edmunds

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An earlier version of this bibiliography was compiled for a seminar at Rutgers (Introduction to Literary Theory, Fall 1991 and 1992). The fourth word in the title is deliberate. It is worth distinguishing, I think, between "literary" and "critical" theory. "Critical theory" was the Frankfurt School's name for what it was doing (see the articles on the Frankfurt School in Makaryk and in Groden and Kreiswirth). Probably the existence of the expression "literary criticism" led to the use of "critical theory" as a (more powerful?) synonym for "literary theory." ¶ The second word in the title means what it says. This bibliography does not include surveys and anthologies of literary theory. For lists of these, see the prefaces to Hawthorn and to Orr. ¶ My favorites amongst the literary-theoretical dictionaries below: for a short one, Baldick; for a long one, Makaryk. I am less clear about the linguistic ones. I tried to limit myelf to those that seemed useful to literary scholars. ¶ The origin of this bibiliography explains the preponderance of works in French and English. I would be grateful for indications of similar dictionaries in other languages, and indeed for any suggestions or corrections. Please send them to edmunds@rci.rutgers.edu.

The headings are:

Cultural Studies
English Grammar
Linguistics
Literature; Literary Theory
Narratology
Rhetorical Terms
Semiotics
Sociology of Language
Stylistics
Theater

Cultural Studies

Brooker, Peter. Cultural Theory: A Glossary. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 1998.

Cashmore, Ellis and Chris Rojek. The Dictionary of Cultural Theorists. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 1999.
English Grammar

Chalker, Sylvia, and Edmund Weiner. The Oxford Dictionary of English Grammar. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1994.

Linguistics

Crystal, David. A Dictionary of Linguistics and Phonetics. 4th ed. Oxford: Blackwell. 1997.

Baldick (see under Literature; Literary Theory) refers to this dictionary as the standard one. Wales (see under Stylistics) refers to Crystal as the model for the layout of her dictionary.
RUTGERS: (Alex) P29.C65 1991 (3rd ed.)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Dubois, Jean et al. Dictionnaire de linguistique et des sciences du langage. Paris: Larousse. 1994.
514 pages long.  Contains many "encyclopedic articles" (e.g., on "embrayeur," "parole," and "langue") as well as short articles.  Does not contain articles on persons.
RUTGERS: (Alex)
PRINCETON: (Firestone) PC2630.D836
Ducrot, Oswald, and Tzvetan Todorov. Encyclopedic Dictionary of the Sciences of Language. Translated by Catherine Porter. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press. 1979. Originally published as Dictionnaire encyclopédique des sciences du langage (Paris: Éditions de Seuil, 1973).
This remarkable dictionary digests everything relevant at the time of its writing. The appendix, "Toward a Critique of the Sign," shows that what we now call "deconstruction" was already fully evolved in 1973 and was a broadly shared outlook.
RUTGERS: (Alex) P29.D813 (trans.)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Malmkjaer, Kirsten ed. The Linguistics Encyclopedia. London: Routledge. 1991.
Articles on technical matters but also on, e.g., metaphor and set theory. Good index.
RUTGERS: (Alex) REF P29.L52 1991
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Literature; Literary Theory

Abrams, M. H. A Glossary of Literary Terms. 6th ed. Fort Worth, TX: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. 1993.

RUTGERS: (Dana) REF PN41.A184 (earlier eds. in other Rutgers libraries)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Baldick, Chris. The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Literary Terms. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 1990.
RUTGERS: (Alex) REF PN41.C67 1990
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Coyle, Martin, Peter Garside, Malcolm Kersall, and John Peck, ed. Encyclopaedia of Literature and Criticism. London: Routledge. 1991.
Oriented to English literature, i.e., literature in the English language, but there is a section of eleven articles on criticism and theory; also an introductory esssay on criticism by Christopher Norris. For whom see the article in Sim.
RUTGERS: (Alex) REF PN41.E53 1990
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Cuddon, John A. A Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory. 3rd ed. Oxford: Blackwell. 1990.
Goes back to 1976 (already a rev. ed.), when the title ended at Terms.
RUTGERS: (Alex) REF (Dana) REF (Camdn) stacks PN41.C83 1977b (Alex) stacks PN41.C83
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Fowler, Roger. A Dictionary of Modern Critical Terms. 2nd ed. London. 1987.
RUTGERS: (Alex) REF PN41.D4794 1987 (Dglss) REF ditto
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Groden, Michael, and Martin Kreiswirth, ed. The Johns Hopkins Guide to Literary Theory and Criticism. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press. 1994.
An article on Luce Irigaray but none on Hans Robert Jauss or Wolfgang Iser, who are mentioned in a paragraph in the article "German Theory and Criticism."
RUTGERS: (Alex) REF Z6514.C97J64 1994 (Dana) (Dglss) (Camdn) REF PN81.A12J64 1994
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Hawthorn, Jeremy. A Glossary of Contemporary Literary Theory. London: Edward Arnold. 4th ed. 2000.
Succeeds A Concise Glossary of ... . The second edition also appeared in a shorter, paperback edition. Hawthorn is one of the Dr. Johnson's in this bibiliography: he wrote this glossary himself. In his preface, he organizes all of his glossed terms under twenty headings: Anthropology and cultural studies; Bakhtin group; Deconstruction; Discourse analysis; Feminism; Linguistics; Marxism; Media Studies; Narratology; New Criticism; New Historicism and Cultural Materialism; Phenomenology and Geneva School; Pragmatism; Prague School/Linguistics Circle; Psychology and Psychoanalysis; Reader-response criticism; Russian Formalism; Semiotics and Information Theory; Structuralism and post-structuralism; Style and stylistics. (Preceding comment based on 2nd ed. I have not seen the 4th, which is seventy terms beyond the third.)
RUTGERS: (Alex) (Dana) REF PN44.5.H37 1994 (2nd ed.)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Lentricchia, Frank and Thomas McLaughlin, ed. Critical Terms for Literary Study. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press. 1990. 2nd ed. 1995.
First edition sold 30,000 copies; and was translated into Chinese. Twenty-two articles under three headings: 1. Literature as Writing; 2. Interpretation; 3. Literature, Culture, Politics. They range from the inadequate (Hillis Miller, "Narrative") to the very useful (Barbara Johnson, "Writing"). I will comment on the second edition in a future issue of this bibliography.
RUTGERS: (Alex) PN81.C84 (1st edition); (Camdn) ditto 1995 (2nd edition)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Makaryk, Irene R. ed. Encyclopedia of Contemporary Literary Theory : Approaches, Scholars, Terms. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. 1993.
In three parts: 1. Approaches, consisting of forty-eight (sic) articles; 2. Scholars; 3. Terms. 656 pages. The best of the big ones.
RUTGERS: (Alex) REF (Camdn) PN81.E43 1993
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Orr, Leonard. A Dictionary of Critical Theory. New York: Greenwood. 1991.
Orr is another Dr. Johnson. He wrote this dictionary himself, and his preface tells you how he chose the terms he includes - an unusual revelation in these dictionaries.
RUTGERS: (Alex) REF (Klmr) REF PN98.S6077 1991
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Preminger, Alexander, ed. Princeton Enyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics. Rev. ed. Princeton: Princeton University Press. 1974.
The old, pre-theory warhorse. The Princeton Handbook of Poetic Terms is an abridged edition.
RUTGERS: (Alex)ENG PN1021.E5
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Schweikle, Günther and Irmgard, ed. Metzler Literatur Lexikon : Begriffe und Definitionen. Stuttgart: Metzler. 2nd ed. 1990.
Historical, not theoretical, in orientation.
RUTGERS: (Alex)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Sim, Stuart, ed. The A-Z Guide to Modern Literary and Cultural Theorists. Hemel Hempsted, UK: Prentice Hall / Harvester Wheatsheaf. 1995.
From Chinua Achebe to A. A. Zhdanov by way of a 100-person who's who in which you find Freud and Frye, Gadamer and Henry Louis Gates, Jr. cheek by jowl. The contributors are all Englishpersons. A classicist notes the absence of Martha Nussbaum, who might have deserved a place amongst the living theorists in this assembly.
RUTGERS: (Alex) REF PN 74.A2 1995
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Narratology

Prince, Gerald. A Dictionary of Narratology. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. 1987.

RUTGERS: (Alex) (Camdn) (Dglss) P302.7.P75 1987
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Rhetorical Terms
Cf. Preminger and Schweikle under Literature; Literary Theory.
R. Dean Anderson Jr.  Glossary of Greek Rhetorical Terms connected to Methods of Argumentation, Figures and Tropes from Anaximenes to Quintilian.  Contributions to Biblical Exegesis and Theology, 24. Leuven: Peeters. 2000.
 
The author's aim is to help "those attempting to use and apply Greek rhetorical methods of argumentation, figures and tropes to literature of the Hellenistic and early Imperial period, [..] particularly the documents of the Greek New Testament" (pp.5-6).


Dupriez, Bernard. Gradus: Les procédés littéraires. Paris: Union Génerale d'Éditions. 1980. Translated by A.W. Halsall, under the title Dictionary of Literary Devices (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1991).

The entries are replete with interesting modern examples of traditional rhetorical figures.
RUTGERS: (Alex) PN172.D8 1984 (original; 2 copies)
PRINCETON: (Firestone) (DR) PN172.D813 1991 (trans.)
Lanham, R.A. A Handlist of Rhetorical Terms. Berkeley: University of California Press. 1968. 2nd ed. 1991.
Also available as A Hypertext Handlist of Rhetorical Terms.  1997.
RUTGERS: (Alex) PE1445.A2L3 (first ed.)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Morier, Henri. Dictionnaire de poétique et de rhétorique. 3rd ed. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France. 1981.
RUTGERS: (Alex) ENG and stacks PN1021.M6 1981
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Sloane, Thomas O.  Encyclopedia of Rhetoric.  Oxford: Oxford University Press.
RUTGERS: (Alex)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Semiotics

Bouissac, Paul, ed.  Encyclopedia of Semiotics.  Oxford: Oxford University Press.  1998.
 

RUTGERS: (Alex) REF P99.E64 1998
PRINCETON: (Firestone)


Greimas, A. J. and J. Courtés. Semiotics and Language : An Analytical Dictionary. Translated by Larry Crist, et al. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press. 1982. Originally published as Sémiotique: un dictionnaire raisoné de la théorie du langage (Paris: Hachette, 1979).

RUTGERS: (Alex) P99.G6913 (trans.)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
_______ . Sémiotique: un dictionnaire raisoné de la théorie du langage. Vol. 2. Paris: Hachette. 1986.
RUTGERS: not owned by Rutgers
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Posner, Roland, Klaus Robering, and Thomas A. Sebeok, ed. Semiotik : ein Handbuch zu den zeichentheoretischen Grundlagen von Natur und Kultur. Vol. 1. Handbücher zur Sprach- und Kommunikationswissenschaft. Vol. 13. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter. 1997-.
RUTGERS:
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Sociology of Language

Williams, Raymond. Keywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society, 1780-1950. Rev. ed. New York: 1983. Oxford University Press.

Originally planned as appendix to his Culture and Society, this dictionary was published separately in 1976 and then expanded in the revised edition. The entries are short essays on words of great cultural salience. The articles under A, for example, are Aesthetic, Alienation, Anarchism, Anthropology, and Art. The articles under M, to take another letter, are Man, Management, Masses, Materialism, Mechanical, Media, Mediation, Medieval, Modern, Monopoly, and Myth.
RUTGERS: (Alex)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Sylistics

Wales, Katie. A Dictionary of Stylistics. London: Longman. 1989.

Another Dr. Johnson. Designed for undergraduates and sixth-form students, but useful to the more advanced. Because stylistics draws on "whatever aspects of linguistics are felt to be relevant" and ditto for literary theory, this dictionary covers a broad range in its 484 pages.
RUTGERS: (Alex) REF P301.W35 1989
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Sowinski, Bernhard. Stilistik : Stiltheorien und Stilanalysen. Stuttgart: Metzler. 1991.
Not a dictionary but I included it in case anyone wants to think about the question, which Wales' book does not answer, of what stylistics is.
RUTGERS: (Alex)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)
Theater

Pavis, Patrice. Dictionnaire du théâtre - Termes et concepts de l'analyse théâtral. Paris: Éditions Sociales. 1980.

RUTGERS: (Alex)PN2035.P318 1984 (Spanish trans.)
PRINCETON: (Firestone)

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