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Title: Critic  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Criticism, Panteleimon Kulish, Steve Erickson, Kyle Smith, Film criticism
Collection: Criticism, Entertainment Occupations, Humanities Occupations
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia


Critic by Lajos Tihanyi. Oil on canvas, c.1916.

A critic is a professional who communicates their opinions and assessments of various forms of creative works such as art, literature, music, cinema, theater, fashion, architecture and food. Critical judgments, whether derived from critical thinking or not, may be positive, negative, or balanced, weighing a combination of factors both for and against. Cultural critic Clement Greenberg wrote that a good critic excels through "insights into the evidence ... and by ... loyalty to the relevant"; poet and critic T.S. Eliot wrote "a critic must have a very highly developed sense of fact".[1]

Formally, the word is applied to persons who are publicly accepted and, to a significant degree, followed because of the quality of their assessments or their reputation. Unlike other individuals who may editorialize on subjects via web sites or letters written to publications, professional critics are paid to produce their opinions for print, radio, magazine, television, or Internet companies. Persons who give opinions on current events, public affairs, sports, media, and historical events are often referred to as "pundits" instead of "critics."

Critics are themselves subject to competing critics, since critical judgments always entail subjectivity. An established critic can play a powerful role as a public arbiter of taste or opinion.


  • Derivation 1
  • Online critics 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4


The word critic comes from Greek κριτικός (kritikós), meaning "able to discern",[2] which is a Greek derivation of the word κριτής (krités), meaning a person who offers reasoned judgment or analysis, value judgment, interpretation or observation.[3]

Online critics

Several websites have developed specifically for the purpose of compiling or publishing original critical reviews. Examples include BlogCritics Magazine, Rotten Tomatoes, and Yelp.

See also


  1. ^ Greenberg, Clement (1961). "T.S. Eliot: A Book Review". Art and Culture - Critical Essays. Boston: Beacon Press. p. 239. 
  2. ^ Greek-English Lexicon, at Perseus, Kritikos, Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott.
  3. ^ Greek-English Lexicon, at Perseus, Krites, Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott.
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