September 5, 2012

Death of the Author

I found Barthes' essay to be extremely interesting and informative.  When Barthes discussed the role of the author and how it affects writing, it reminded me of a discussion I had in my Writing and Editing in Print and Online course about originality.  My professor posed a question asking what we think originality is and whether or not we think anything actually is original.  Barthes somewhat addresses the idea of originality when it comes to the roles of the author and the reader of a text.  Barthes claims that in order for a text to be good, it must have a separation from the author who wrote it and be completely up for interpretation by the reader.  He states that text is “a multidimensional space in which a variety of writings, none of the original, blend and clash” (Barthes, Death of the Author).  Barthes also claims that “the writer can only imitate a gesture that is always anterior, never original” (Barthes, Death of the Author).  I disagree with these statements by Barthes.  I think that texts can be original because of the influence of the author of the text and that these influences like writing style and tone are needed to make a text have the impression it will have on the reader. 

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