ERIC Number: ED373323
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Keywords in Composition Studies: Intertextuality.
Intertextuality is a term that is defined variously and, in a sense, cannot be defined categorically and should not be. The term serves as a point of departure for engaging in an academic discourse grounded in differing theoretical and institutional frames. In the wake of poststructuralism, the classical notion of a "definition," a bringing together of scattered particulars, no longer holds together. Though initially defined by Julia Kristeva as a process of constructing a text through selection and inclusion, "intertextuality" has been appropriated by scholars in composition. Using the term to support an expressivist approach, Nancy Kline encourages her students to engage with the "presence" in the text, which in turn is engaged with other presences. James Porter uses the term to counter romantic notions of the writer as an autonomous, creative agent, like E. G. White or Joan Didion. Paul Hunter uses the term to sidestep the problematics of "intersubjectivism," the interpersonal interaction that the discourse community theory assumes; he believes the intertextual matrix is much larger than that given discourse communities. Rather than attempting to measure these theories against some primary source to determine which one qualifies as a misreading, the scholar should, according to Richard Rorty's pragmatism, accept or reject them according to their usefulness. Rorty argues that "definitions" should not be forgotten but should be done without to the extent that it is possible. (TB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Composition Theory; Intertextuality; Kristeva (Julia); Pragmatism; Rorty (Richard)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (45th, Nashville, TN, March 16-19, 1994).