India Uncut

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Sunday, May 08, 2005

An unbridgable gap?

Amit Chaudhuri writes in the Telegraph:
No writer has a given and recognisable audience, except in our dreams and reconstructions of antiquity or medieval history. A writer, sooner or later, has to come to terms with this, in a much more painful and thoroughgoing way than the questioner in the audience will understand. The reader too needs to come terms with it, if they are to have more than a passing interest in what literature does; for the writer not only speaks to the reader, but interrogates the unbridgeable gap between themselves. Any theory of reading that doesn’t take this into account will leave itself open to question.

I'm a little sceptical about the view that literature "interrogates the unbridgeable gap" between the reader and the writer, but never mind that, read the essay. It's a the second of a three-part series; I'd linked to the first part here.
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