March 12, 2007

And the Circle Continues

"Structuralism leads us to think of the poem not as a self-contained organism but as a sequence which has meaning only in relation to a literary system, or rather, to the 'institution' of literature which guides the reader. The sense of a poem's completeness is a function of the totality of the interpretive process, the result of the way we have been taught to read poems" (Culler 291).

Now this- this I like. Culler's "Structuralism and Literature" paints a much better literary picture of intertextuality for me. The idea of looking not only indepthly at the poem itself, but to explore it within the context of other poems- great idea. From reading my other entries, you'll see I'm not 100% behind the idea of intertextuality, but the idea that the poem is not it's own little world, or "self-contained organism", is an excellent way of looking at a work when doing literary criticism. A work should never be just seen as only itself and nothing more, not affected by other literary works, conventions, or authorial intent. A poem is made up of not only what the author puts into it, but also the conventions and corresponding parts of literature that govern how we read, respond, and react to a poem or other piece. The more we read, the more we know. And the more we know, the more we can know about literature.

Culler, ''Structuralism and Literature'' -- Jerz EL312 (Literary Criticism)

Posted by VanessaKolberg at March 12, 2007 6:39 PM | TrackBack

Ok Vanessa, I really enjoyed everything that you were saying, until you said the word "never". Remember when Mama told you to "Never say never," and I think that this applies because intertextual criticism is something that is not always used, because it is not always seen. Culler says that himself in the literature. Whether it is always there is difficult to pinpoint and very difficult to use the word never on. You have hit many of the points that Culler focuses on, and I will explain them in class tomorrow night, but Culler is also trying to not be completely definite in his explanation, he is trying to leave open thoughts to the ideas of conventions and cultural influence, so all I'm saying is be careful using Never and Only. They bite back.

Posted by: Jason Pugh at March 14, 2007 5:10 PM
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