AskDefine | Define critique

Dictionary Definition



1 an essay or article that gives a critical evaluation (as of a book or play) [syn: review, critical review, review article]
2 a serious examination and judgment of something; "constructive criticism is always appreciated" [syn: criticism] v : appraise critically; "She reviews books for the New York Times"; "Please critique this performance" [syn: review]

User Contributed Dictionary



  • IPA: /kri.tik/


From critique.


  1. Essay in which another piece of work is criticised, reviewed, etc.


essay in which another piece of work is criticised, reviewed


  1. To review something.
    I want you to critique this new idea of mine.


To review something




From criticus, from κριτικός (kritikos).


  1. critical
    La situation est à présent plus que critique.


critique m|f
  1. a critic (person)
  1. a criticism

Related terms

Extensive Definition

Critique, especially in philosophical contexts - where it is the translation of the German word Kritik - has clearer meaning than "criticism". (Confusingly, the adjectival form of both critique and criticism is critical, making some uses ambiguous: e.g., "critical theory"). In this broadly political context, a critique is a systematic inquiry into the conditions and consequences of a concept or set of concepts, and an attempt to understand its limitations. A critical perspective, in this sense, is the opposite of a dogmatic one. In philosophy, this sense of the word was defined by Immanuel Kant, who wrote:
We deal with a concept dogmatically…if we consider it as contained under another concept of the object which constitutes a principle of reason and determine it in conformity with this. But we deal with it merely critically if we consider it only in reference to our cognitive faculties and consequently to the subjective conditions of thinking it, without undertaking to decide anything about its object. (Critique of Judgment sec. 74)
Later thinkers used the word critique, in a broader version of Kant's sense of the word, to mean the systematic inquiry into the limits of a doctrine or set of concepts (for instance, much of Karl Marx's work was in the critique of political economy).
The cultural studies approach to criticism arises out of critical theory. It treats cultural products and their reception as sociological evidence, which may be sceptically examined to divine wider social ills such as racism or gender bias.
Formal and casual critiques often use rhetoric to persuade the reader, audience, or opponent. Weakly supported arguments (induction, appeal to rewards or authority, chain of improbabilities (e.g., Butterfly effect), appeal to analogy) tend to parade before a formal conclusion to lead up to a consensus that otherwise might be rejected or revealed as a minority view. Strong critiques rely on deduction, mathematical proofs, scientific experimentation consensus, and formal logic. Both types of critiques find expression in English position papers, trade journals, periodicals, political and religious leaflets, civic testimony, and judicial cross examination. Pseudo-criticism relies on hidden agendas ( e.g., propaganda, Yellow_journalism), adolescence, snd Group_think.

See also


Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

analysis, approval, book review, censure, comment, commentary, commentation, copy, critical bibliography, critical journal, critical notice, critical review, criticism, dwelling upon, editorial, elaboration, gloss, going over, iteration, leader, leading article, literary criticism, notice, practicing, reaffirmation, recap, recapitulation, recital, recountal, recounting, rehash, rehearsal, reissue, reiteration, remark, report, reprint, restatement, resume, retelling, review, running commentary, summary, summing up, write-up
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