Substituted Author, Involved Reader And All-Pervasive Text: A Postmodernist Reading Of Italo Calvino’s If On A Winter’s Night A Traveller

Publication Information

Journal Title: Asian Journal of Multidisciplinary Research & Review
Author(s): Dr Santosh Kumar Sethy
Published On: 22/08/2022
Volume: 3
Issue: 4
First Page: 71
Last Page: 82
ISSN: 2582-8088
Publisher: The Law Brigade Publisher

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Cite this Article

Dr Santosh Kumar Sethy, Substituted Author, Involved Reader And All-Pervasive Text: A Postmodernist Reading Of Italo Calvino’s If On A Winter’s Night A Traveller, Volume 3 Issue 4, Asian Journal of Multidisciplinary Research & Review, 71-82, Published on 22/08/2022, Available at https://ajmrr.thelawbrigade.com/article/substituted-author-involved-reader-and-all-pervasive-text-a-postmodernist-reading-of-italo-calvinos-if-on-a-winters-night-a-traveller/

Abstract

In the realm of Postmodern thought, there is a marked shift from the pre-existing dominance of the author to the all- pervasive ubiquity of the text. The text is no more seen as an entity that is the sole creation of the author-god, the uncontested creative genius. It is, on the contrary, a construct in language. The author remains no more than a “shaman” (as Roland Barthes would have it), a mediator through which the infinite play of language precipitates into the text. In this arena of shifting perspectives, it is also found that it is not the author who renders meaning to the text; rather, it is the reader who gives meaning to the text through his act of reading.

In the Postmodern realm, the author is no more the creator of the text, rather is only a medium through which language precipitates into the text. The importance rather shifts to the reader who through his act of interpretation renders meaning to the text which readily defies the meaning implied by the omniscient author. In this postmodernism-induced arena of shifting perspectives, language is given supreme importance as the text is constructed in language and there is “no outside text” (Derrida 158). Based on these precepts, this article intends to examine Calvino’s magnum opus If on a Winter’s Night a Traveller in the light of the above-mentioned postmodern concepts and to establish the text as a representative work of postmodernity.

Keywords: Postmodern, Text, Author-god, Shaman, Act of reading

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