The Body... Her Body
It seemed my body could do anything I wanted it to. How much I dared was the only question.
The Body by Shelley Jackson
Shelley Jackson takes her readers on a journey through her view of her body. At times I felt the reading to be a bit uncomfortable, like I was reading someone's diary. Whether this was all pure fiction or not, I still felt that I was invading her space.
I liked reading The Body because it was easy to follow. Because each page dealt with a seperate part of the body, one did not have to read previous "chapters" to understand the current one. I was not lost. I took the time to make sure I had read every entry, every description that Jackson had posted of her body.
I think The Body is very interesting because Jackson views the body through an artist's point of view. She describes her struggles with drawing the body. Her struggles with learning how to draw something with correct perspective are explored. She views the body as more than a functional piece of hardware. She can see the body, her body, as a piece of art that can inspire the creation of more art.
This work of writing works extraordinarily well as a hypertext because the body and hypertext are very similar. Each can be viewed as a whole. The parts make up the whole but do not have to be reviewed in any particular order. The hands can be looked at before the ears. The ears do not have to be comprehended in order for the hands to be understood. I think the same should be true with creative hypertext. Each entry, each page, should be able to stand on it's own. The different pages should add to each other, should compliment each other. Alone they don't make complete sense, just as the feet don't make complete sense when not attached to the body. But readers should be able to read each page out of order and still sense what is being conveyed.