This succinct introduction to modern theories of literature and the arts demonstrates how each theory is built and what it can accomplish. It represents a wide variety of theories, including phenomenological theory, hermeneutical theory, gestalt theory, reception theory, semiotic theory, Marxist theory, deconstruction, anthropological theory, and feminist theory. It uses classic literary texts, such as Keats' "Ode on a Grecian Urn", Spenser's "The Shephearde's Calender" and T. S. Eliot's "The Waste Land" to illustrate his explanations. It includes key statements by the major proponents of each theory. It presents the different theories objectively, allowing students to decide which if any, they subscribe to. It gives students a sense of the potential of theory. It includes a glossary of technical terms.