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Rereading, Rewriting, Revisioning: Poststructuralist Interpretation and Literary Pedagogy

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Abstract

The seven critical papers discussed in the foregoing chapter are best read in their dialogic sequence, in their effort to trace ‘in other words the figure in the carpet through every convolution’ (FIC, p. 303). Despite their understandable desire for hermeneutic closure, the students who participated in this experiment chose to follow James in a process of reperusal and ‘watched renewal [which is] livelier than that of the accepted repetition’, producing ‘so many more of the shining silver fish afloat in the deep sea of one’s own endeavour than the net of the widest casting could pretend to gather in’ (The Art of the Novel, p. 345). Rather than contain the process of figural revision triggered by their critical rewriting, these readers felt encouraged to explore the ‘wealth of margin’, the site where meaning is produced in the interaction between text and reader. Their attention was thus turned on the interpretive activities (gap-filling, selection, integration, schematisation, restructuring) and modes of critical articulation available to readers who wish to channel their hermeneutic interest into a productive mode of criticism.

Keywords

Literary Pedagogy Literary Text Narrative Text Critical Rewrite Interpretive Process 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes and References

  1. 3.
    Christine Brooke-Rose,‘“The Turn of the Screw” and Its Critics: An Essay in Non-Methodology’, A Rhetoric of the Unreal: Studies in Narrative & Structure, Especially of the Fantastic (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1981), pp. 128–57.Google Scholar
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    I have been following here suggestions from two recent textbooks that group theoretical approaches around critical contexts and a core of literary texts: Shirley F. Stalton, Literary Theories in Praxis (Philadelphia: University of Philadelphia Press, 1987);Google Scholar
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    Donald Keesey, Contexts for Criticism (Palo Alto: Mayfield Publishing Company, 1987).Google Scholar
  4. 15.
    On the role of schema theory in reading, see D.E. Rumelhart, ‘Schemata: The Building Blocks of Cognition’, in Theoretical Issues in Reading Comprehension, ed. R.J. Spiro, B.C. Bruce, and W.F. Brewer (Hillside, N.J.: Erlbaum, 1980);Google Scholar
  5. 15.
    also Margaret Early and Bonnie O. Ericson, ‘The Act of Reading’, in Literature in the Classroom: Readers, Texts and Contexts, ed. Ben F. Nelms (Urbana, Ill.: National Council of Teachers of English, 1988), pp. 31–44.Google Scholar
  6. 18.
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  18. 45.
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    Steve Katz, Moving Parts (New York: Fiction Collective, 1977), ‘Trip’,, pp. 73–4.Google Scholar
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    Mary Louise Pratt, Towards a Speech Act Theory of Literary Discourse (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1977), p. 66.Google Scholar
  22. 54.
    Wayne C. Booth, Critical Understanding: The Powers and Limits of Pluralism (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1979), p. 284.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Marcel Cornis-Pop 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Virginia Commonwealth UniversityRichmondUK

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