Nearly thirty essays contribute to an understanding of the practice of literary studies presenting the reader with a perceptive series of critical interventions which, themselves, engage in the very locations from which criticism and theory have emerged. A further reading list accompanies each chapter. Key Features * Breadth of coverage from Coleridge through Virginia Woolf to Raymond Williams and Terry Eagleton; and from the 'Cambridge School' to Post-structuralism and Postcolonial theory. * Focus on the history of modern criticism. * Accessibly written. * Theoretical debates are set in full historical, cultural and philosophical contexts.