Fredric Jameson's 1972 essay "Meta-Commentary" takes up just this question, and the argument is expanded in his 1981 book The Political Unconscious, particularly the long, first chapter, "On Interpretation." (Although, I think, the chapters on genre criticism and on Conrad actually illustrate the theory better.)
Huh. I've never read this one, but Jameson is one of the ones thqt Marcus and Best hold up as an example of symptomatic reading, if I'm recalling correctly. Interesting--I'll have to follow that up!