''Introduction: What is Literature?, Eagleton
Reading this selection made me look up the definition of formalism. Now I understand that "formalists see the literary work as an object in its own right". Formalist look at the form, genre, and the whole structure of the work and can get the understanding of it. I think of formalism as a cheet sheet to an exam. It has all the background information to any literary work out there. When we learn about the basic things (like Father Stephen had put emphasis on in Intro to Poetry), we learn all the complicated stuff. Eagleton has stated the "literature, by forcing us into a dramatic awareness of langauge, refreshes these habitual responses and renders objects more 'perceptible'" More perciptable to understand the work and use it to prove all kinds of theories. Formalism is the theory most know to us and non-English majors (We know the difference between poems and novels). This is the first step to a lifetime of literary criticism.