This concise but thorough introduction to criticism teaches students critical skills, whether examining television, fiction, nonfiction, visual arts, or oral and written discourse. Three introductory chapters provide a solid foundation to explore nine approaches to critical study. The perspectives presented bridge disciplinary boundaries and include: asking questions about how audiences process communication, understanding human symbol systems and social relations as vehicles for comprehending the world, value and narrative analysis, and psychoanalytic and ideological criticism. The easy-to-follow discussions of using each approach contain questions critics are most likely to ask, assumptions governing the approach, an exploration of sample analyses that reveal vocabulary most frequently used, and a review of the problems encountered by critics. The interplay of persuasion, poetic theory, and accurate interpretation allows students to incorporate the most useful elements in their critiques and to borrow insights from one approach to clarify and strengthen another. Multiple examples are sprinkled throughout, enriching students’ learning experience.Malcolm O. Sillars is the author of 'Communication Criticism: Rhetoric, Social Codes, Cultural Studies', published 2000 under ISBN 9781577661719 and ISBN 1577661710.