The Death of the Author


(permanent link) added: 2008-11-18 23:13:02 sponsor: Unknown Troper @ 142.103.92.28 (last reply: 2008-11-18 23:13:02)

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Alternatively, Rollin With Roland

Also: Up for Grabs, and maybe Needs a Better Title

An idea in literary theory (present in one form or another amongst various sub-disciplines) which can be basically summarised that once the writing is done, the author's thoughts and opinions are not inherently less or more "valid" than those of anyone else. In essence, Word of God is actually just a very small and elite Fandom consisting of the author. Sometimes known as the "intentional fallacy" or "authorial trespassing".

The title was coined by the critic Roland Barthes, hence the alternative title.

Examples:
  • After J.K. Rowling announced her belief that Dumbledore is gay, one response asserted this principle and claimed that if she intended this, she should have put in in the text and that her "outing" of him is non-canon
  • Nabokov was not averse answering questions such as "what happened to X after Y?". One such answer, saying Kinbote committed suicide after Pale Fire became widely read but eventually provoked a backlash by academic critics invoking authorial trespassing.
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