Introduction to Intertexuality and Interpretation | LITERARY THEORY COURSE
Intertextuality is a set of relations between texts, which can include direct quotations, allusions, literary conventions, imitation, parody, and unconscious sources among others.
Intertextuality also involves assumptions regarding the reader, the situation being referred to, and its context.
Hi, this is Mihnea. Welcome to UpLife. This is the first video in a new series on Literary Theory in which we will discuss the concept of intertextuality in all its aspects.
In traditional literary theory, it is assumed that when we read a work of literature we are trying to find a meaning which lies inside that work. Why? Because literary texts possess meaning, and readers extract it. The process of extracting meaning from texts is called interpretation.
However, contemporary literary and cultural theory has radically changed such ideas. It is now believed that works of literature are built from systems, codes, and traditions established by previous works of literature.
Crucial to the meaning of a work of literature are also the systems, the codes, and the traditions of other fields, such as films, music, art, and of culture in general.
The act of reading rather than the interpretation of one work, engages the reader in discovering a network of textual relations. Tracing those relations is, in fact, interpreting the text, that is, discovering its meaning, or meanings.
Reading thus becomes a process of ‘touring between texts.’
In “Intertextuality”, Graham Allen, an Associate Professor in Modern English at University College Cork, Ireland, writes: “Meaning becomes something which exists between a text and all the other texts to which it refers and relates, moving out from the independent text into a network of textual relations.”
To sum up, in literary theory, the analysis of a work of literature involves making intertextual references, extracting meaning, being a critical reader, and interpreting a text.
Now you’re ready to embark on an exciting journey in the world of literary theory and discover the intricacies of intertextuality.
To get you started, I recommend you have a look at Graham Allen’s well-written and well-researched book “Intertextuality”. See the Amazon link in the description below.
The basis of this Literary Theory series about intertextuality is based on my book, “The Matrix and the Alice Books.” Consider supporting our project by purchasing a copy. The Kindle edition is only 99 cents. Check out the Amazon link in the description below.
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► “Intertextuality” by Graham Allen https://amzn.to/2Q6Slik
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Mihnea is a Beijing-based Romanian travel vlogger and education entrepreneur with an interest in reading literacy, language learning, and world travel.
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