Why study literary theory? Is theory a conceptual framework or a tool-kit? Is theory a companion to literary study or is it crucial for literary interpretation? These are some of the questions I propose to address in this seminar which will address literary and cultural problems that have been shaped by theoretical concerns and concepts. This course will not adopt a historical approach nor will it be a survey of “schools” of literary theory. The syllabus will focus on topics such as Power, Race, Identity, Sexuality, Environmentalism, Postcolonialism, Inequality, Poverty etc. etc. and trace theoretical contributions that have been formative in shaping the diverse discourses around these issues. . Aesthetic, political and ethical approaches will be knotted together in our conversations. The seminar will be concerned with the relation between cultural form and cultural value. Literary texts will be used in conjunction with theoretical works.