An Ontology of the Text: Shifting between Theory and Pragmatism
In their article on "Intention, Interpretation and Literature" (“Against Theory”, 1982), Steven Knapp and Walter Benn Michaels focus on the articulation of the notions of intention and interpretation in literature. Their article was clearly intended as a manifesto against theory while it really leads to a new way of defining the literary text, shifting between theory and pragmatism. Hence, can theory still make its point in literary creation? We will use the case of the classics as an example to try to comprehend what that more practical approach implies as far as literary creation is concerned, enquiring about the nature of the classics, their inherent and compelling necessity, and pedagogy. We will ultimatelaty discuss the renewal of literature and how both theory and pragmatism participate in the process.
Keywords: Literature, Literary Creation, Literary Theory, Pragmatism, Text, Classics
Dr. Elise Bayle
Teacher, Modern Languages, Royal St George's College
As an author, she published poetry and short fiction in Australia, Canada and France.