Robert Scholes devotes an entire book-length study on the importance of literary theory in the classroom. He argues that, when it comes to understanding and using theory, “It is the great aim or end of liberal education and therefore not something we can assume to be already developed in students just beginning their college education. But we must start working on the development of critical skill in our introductory courses” (62). Due to the fact that “theory instruction since the mid-1960’s has mostly been experienced in graduate, not undergraduate, classes” Scholes argument from 1985 has yet to influence reality (Chambers 69). Thus, we must incorporate theory into undergraduate classes, rather than wait until the graduate level to teach it.


Works Cited:

Chambers, Ellie, and Marshall Gregory. “Teaching Literary Theory and Teaching Writing.” Teaching & Learning English Literature. London: SAGE Publ., 2006. 63-90.

Scholes, Robert. Textual Power: Literary Theory and the Teaching of English. New Haven: Yale UP, 1985.