"Methodology of Systemic formalism" A pioneering model in the formulation of history writing of literature in 20th century

Document Type : Research Paper


Today, it has been evident that without having a theory or a definite approach either to literature & history, writing a history of literature becomes totally impossible. Despite the initial contradiction between formalistic & historical methodologies, systemic formalism could be recognized as a pioneer movement which could formulate a definite methodological framework for history writing of literature. With such a perspective in mind, systemic formalism projected some terms as: evolution, change, historical dynamism, canonicity, dominant trait, system & so on. This approach, in spite of the criticisms made against it, took the first steps in bridging the gap between synchronic & diachronic studies in literature. Moreover, Literature which has been served until then as a covering to prove the assumptions of historians to interpret the flow of history became the main focus of historical studies. Following a critical approach, this paper seeks to answer these questions: first, what are the theoretical origins of systemic formalism? Secondly, what are its possibilities & limitations in compiling a history of literature?