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UTEL

Glossary of Literary Theory
by Greig E. Henderson and Christopher Brown

Canon:

An authorized or accepted list of books. In modem parlance, the literary canon comprehends the privileged texts, classics, or great books which are thought to belong permanently on university reading lists. Recent theory -- especially feminist, Marxist, and poststructuralist -- critically examines the process of canon formation and questions the hegemony of white male writers. Such theory sees canon formation as the ideological act of a dominant institution and seeks to undermine the notion of canonicity itself, thereby preventing the exclusion of works by women, minorities, and oppressed peoples.


© Greig E. Henderson and Christopher Brown,
University of Toronto
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University of Toronto English Library
Director: Ian Lancashire.
Last modified: March 31, 1997