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The Death of the Author

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Jennifer Lee Hallsey

on 19 May 2014

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Transcript of The Death of the Author

"The Death of the Author"
(from
Images, Music, Text
, 1977)
Roland Barthes
Jennifer Lee Hallsey
J. Field/ARTH 703 Critical Theory
Spring 2014
birth of the author
"...the responsibility for a narrative is never assumed by a person but by a
mediator, shaman or relator whose ‘performance’
— the mastery of the narrative code —
may possibly be admired but never his ‘genius’...

"...the author is a modern figure..."
"French rationalism and the
personal faith of the Reformation
, it discovered the
prestige of the individual
, of, as it is more nobly put, the
‘human person’
. It is thus logical that in literature it should be this positivism, the epitome and culmination of capitalist ideology, which has attached the
greatest importance to the ‘person’ of

the author
."
what is text?
"We know now that a text is not a line of words releasing a single ‘theological’ meaning (the ‘message’ of the Author-God) but
a

multi-dimensional space in which a variety of writings, none of them original, blend and clash
. The text is a tissue of quotations drawn from the innumerable centres of culture."
"All writing is in fact cut-ups. A collage of words read heard overheard. What else?"
— William S. Burroughs
text is any object that can be "read," .... This set of symbols is considered in terms of the informative message's content, rather than in terms of its physical form or the medium in which it is represented.
wiki: text
"...a multi-dimensional space in which a variety of writings, none of them original, blend and clash..."
"All writing is in fact cut-ups. A collage of words
read heard overheard. What else?"
— William S. Burroughs
HackPrinceton 2013, created by Pawel, Vicky, Ugne, Daniel, Harvey, Edward, Alex, Max and Baxter. http://what-would-i-say.com/
"Cut the words and see how they fall."
— William S. Burroughs
"...a text’s unity lies not in its origin but in its destination."
"The birth of the reader must be at the cost of the death of the Author."
When you detach writing from the source (author), it
releases the text from an anchor
. Weight is then shifted to a general audience (reader), and an indefinite range of possible readings can occur.

http://www.columbia.edu/itc/visualarts/r4100/author-narrator.html#barthes
"The Author is thought to nourish the book, which is to say that he exists before it, thinks, suffers, lives for it...
the modern scriptor is born simultaneously with the text
"
"Having buried the Author, the modern scriptor can thus no longer believe, as according to the pathetic view of his predecessors, that this hand is too slow for his thought or passion... For him, on the contrary,
the hand, cut off from any voice, borne by a pure gesture of inscription (and not of expression), traces a field without origin
—or which, at least, has no other origin than language itself, language which ceaselessly calls into question all origins."
http://www.hothousemagazine.org/what-would-i-says-poetry-the-cut-up-method/

http://what-would-i-say.com/
HackPrinceton 2013, created by Pawel, Vicky, Ugne, Daniel, Harvey, Edward, Alex, Max and Baxter. http://what-would-i-say.com/ + JENNIFERBot
....The author is a modern figure
..."
Joseph Kosuth
Martin Margiela

David Byrne, Brian Eno
oblique strategies
automatism, "spontaneous prose", fragmentation, parody, paradox, intertextuality
Thom Browne
Talking Heads
Stop Making Sense (1984)
Wanna Swap Your Ring?, Ted Noten 1995
René Magritte
The Treachery of Images
(La trahison des images) 1928–29
Jennifer Lee Hallsey
The Betrayal of Words
2014

"The only American novelist living
today who may conceivably be
possessed by genius"
- Norman Mailer on Burroughs
"Even
authors whose techniques actively undermine the authority of the writer
, such as William S. Burroughs with the cut-up method he borrowed from Brion Gysin, and Kathy Acker with her piracies and appropriations, earned a degree of fame that was more than a little ironic. For the foreseeable future, Barthes's and Foucault's meditations on the irrelevance of the author
represent a distant horizon
or perhaps even an
unattainable ideal
of a mode of reading in which the
text is freed from the potentially limiting function of the author.
"
(c) 2006 Bill Freind. After the Author, After Hiroshima
http://pmc.iath.virginia.edu/text-only/issue.906/17.1freind.txt
Tristan Tzara,
Brion Gysin, W.S. Burroughs
'Fold-in' & 'cut-up' intentionally and
rearrange text randomly to find meaningful
prose
automatism, "spontaneous prose", fragmentation, parody, paradox, intertextuality
automatism, "spontaneous prose", fragmentation, parody, paradox, intertextuality
automatism, "spontaneous prose", fragmentation, parody, paradox, intertextuality
automatism, "spontaneous prose", fragmentation, parody, paradox, intertextuality
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Full transcript