Marxist Criticism (3)
Yet other theories and attitudes were expressed by the Romanian critic Lucien Goldmann, who developed a theory of ‘homologies’. The term ‘homology’ is more commonly used to denote a concept in the natural sciences. For example, the pectoral fins of a fish, a bird’s wing and a mammal’s forelimbs are ‘homologous’ because they occupy morphologically equivalent positions in the body and are genetically cognate. Thus, it denotes affinity of structure and origin apart from form or use. Goldmann’s ‘homologies’ are structural parallels between literature, ideas, and social groups. In his view literary texts are not the work of individual geniuses but are based on ‘transindividual mental structures’ which belong to groups or classes. The ideas which exist in these structures are discovered and then re-created in literary form by outstanding writers. Goldmann elaborates this theory through “The Hidden God 1964” in a discussion of Racine’s tragedies, Pascal’s philosophy and the social group called “noblesse de la robe”. In his book “Towards a Sociology of the Novel (1964) he pursues the ‘homology’ idea in an analysis of the structure of the modern novel in relation to the structure of market economy.