The Theory Toolbox

Critical Concepts for the Humanities, Arts, & Social Sciences

By (author) Jeffrey Nealon, Susan Searls Giroux

Paperback - £32.00

Publication date:

01 July 2011

Length of book:

290 pages


Rowman & Littlefield Publishers

ISBN-13: 9780742570498

This text involves students in understanding and using the "tools" of critical social and literary theory from the first day of class. It is an ideal first introduction before students encounter more difficult readings from critical and postmodern perspectives.

Nealon and Searls Giroux describe key concepts and illuminate each with an engaging inquiry that asks students to consider deeper and deeper questions. Written in students' own idiom, and drawing its examples from the social world, literature, popular culture, and advertising, The Theory Toolbox offers students the language and opportunity to theorize rather than positioning them to respond to theory as a reified history of various schools of thought. Clear and engaging, it avoids facile description, inviting students to struggle with ideas and the world by virtue of the book's relentless challenge to common assumptions and its appeal to common sense.

Updated throughout, the second edition of The Theory Toolbox includes a discussion of new media, as well as two new chapters on life and nature.
They're back! Nealon and Sarls Giroux still pack more thoughtful questions and more useful information into the second edition of their 'toolbox' than multi-volume encyclopedias. If you can find a better guide for both beginners and more advanced students to the major intellectual challenges of our time, go ahead and buy it. Meanwhile, the readers of this handy (and witty) little text will already be writing the works that will be discussed in the third edition.