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February 18, 2007

Enough with this already

Kolodny, '"A Map for Rereading: Or, Gender and the Interpretation of Literary Texts'' -- Jerz EL312 (Literary Criticism)

She seems to be using this work to defend women as authors more than discuss reader response. As Erin said in her blog, I wanted Kolodny to write an argument I could use to further myself as a woman, not make me feel like the victim of some frivolous “male oppression.”

The last paragraph in this essay made me furious. Kolodny was trying to make a point that we all need to "recognize the existence of a significant body of writing by women in America and be encouraged to learn how to read it within its own unique and informing contexts of meaning and symbol."
So basically Kolodny was illustrating how the writings of women are so different that we need to focus more on how to read their writing because it was written by a woman.
This makes no sense to me because it did not relate to reader-response at all. All writers have different styles and language and that is what makes literature, literature. It doesn't matter if an alien wrote it, the work still has a main objective that allows for the reader to respond to it whether they relate to it or can empathize with the writer.
Yes, a woman may be able to relate to a woman writer more so than a male writer and vice versa and we may have learned through traditions. It is obvious that males and females interpret a work differently, but that is what is unique about literature. Everyone can respond to the same work differently and share it with others.

Posted by Denamarie at February 18, 2007 10:11 PM

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Ooh, we're females and we're relating to each other, Kolodny would be proud! Then, we''ll have a pillow fight and braid hair and she'll use us fas examples of what oppression does to young women in her next rant. LOL. In all seriousness, you are correct. The work seemed to have nothing to do with the reader response. It reminded me of author intent or historical criticism, but I guess that's where we come in. As critics we will learn to find different ways to criticize any and every work, which is one positive thing I've learned from Ms. Kolodny (hyphen some ridiculous married name her kids will struggle to write in kindergarten. Okay, now I'm being mean, I'll stop).

Posted by: Erin at February 19, 2007 10:12 AM

Erin, I know.
When I read your blog, I wasn't surprised that you were offended not only with the lack of argument with reader-response but also with the feminist idea.

Oh, by the way, you are really funny =]

Posted by: Denamarie at February 20, 2007 10:47 PM

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