April 9, 2007

Feldstein and the Reader-Respoststructuralist Criticism

Feldstein, ''Reader, Text, and Ambiguous Referentiality in 'The Yellow Wallpaper''' -- Jerz EL312 (Literary Criticism)

"The use of text as mirror problematizes interpretation because it produces a doubling that, like the reductio ad absurdum of irony, resists the easy answer or definitive diagnosis" (Feldstein 406).

Looking at The Yellow Wallpaper in this type of criticism definitely requires that the literature takes another critical approach as well: The Reader-Response Criticism. This type of reading requires that the audience looks at the text in a specific manner, whether it be ironically or a realistic reading, and discusses the influences and the issues of looking at the literature as a mirror reflective on the audience. The ambiguity of the ending, and the role of John, and the rest of the story (sarcasm intended) is actually intended, and the only way we can have a shot of interpreting the literature is by looking for signifiers to help provide a couple of possible solutions for the reader.

Posted by The Gentle Giant at April 9, 2007 9:10 PM

I hadn't even thought of reader response, Jason. We have to look at other's opinions and the signs in order to come up with clear conclusions. This is also a good example of rhetoric because the ending leaves us guessing. We are not sure how it ends and thus we get into fiery debates in class, but that's also a good way to work on using signifiers to find meaning. Reading the signs gives us some weight in justifying our arguments. You made some very good points!

Posted by: Erin at April 10, 2007 12:25 PM
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