February 15, 2007

Words, Words, Words: History, History, History

The division of the universe of discourse in this way gives the critic power to speak persuasively for the literary texts which are thus constructed as unable to speak authoritatively for themselves.
Paul Yachnin "Shakespeare and the Idea of Obedience: Gonzalo in The Tempest"

It is all about the history books and their take on the text. Paul Yachnin's article followed the course of action and pace similar to a history book - and gives this valid point.

Beyond a shadow of a doubt, if you've got the history to back it up, you can prove anything.

While I understand the value of historical references to help study literature, I don't agree that it "gives the critic power to speak persuasively for the literary texts which are thus constructed as unable to speak authoritatively for themselves." The text may not be clear, but it shouldn't require outside reading in order to speak for itself.

Posted by Diana Geleskie at February 15, 2007 11:44 AM | TrackBack
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