Article: article from journal or magazin.
The Implied Book and the Narrative Text. On a Blind Spot in Narratological Theory - from a Media Studies Perspective
Journal of Literary Theory
The article is concerned with the formal definition of a largely unnoticed factor in narrative structure. Based on the assumptions that (1) the semantics of a written text depend, among other factors, directly on its visual alignment in space, that (2) the formal structure of a text has to meet that of its spatial presentation and that (3) these assumptions hold true also for narrative texts (which, however, in modern times typically conceal their spatial dimensions by a low-key linear layout), it is argued that, how ever low-key, the expected material shape of a given narrative determines the configuration of its plot by its author. The ,implied book' thus denotes an author's historically assumable, not necessarily conscious idea of how his text, which is still in the process of creation, will be dimensionally presented and under these circumstances visually absorbed. Assuming that an author's knowledge of this later (potentially) substantiated material form influences the composition, the implied book is to be understood as a text-genetically determined, structuring moment of the text. Historically reconstructed, it thus serves the methodical analysis of structural characteristics of a completed text.
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