Michel Foucault -What is an Author? Research Methods Monday, 1/30/12
Writing PromptIn Sherman Alexies short story "Breaking andEntering," the narrator reveals that he is Native,not white. How (if at all) would it change theevents of the story if (a) he was white or (b) hewas Native but did not tell us?How would it change our reading of the story ifthe author, Alexie, was white and not Native?
Writer as Dead Man?" . . . the mark of the writeris reduced to nothing morethan the singularity of hisabsence; he must assumethe role of the dead man inthe game of writing" (102-3).
The Authors NameHow is the authors name different from anyother proper name? (pages 106-7)What is Foucaults term for this difference?
Punishing the Author Foucault suggests that the authors name becomes important in relationship to changing systems of legal punishment and property. Whats he talking about here? (pages 108-9)
Science vs. LiteratureFoucault argues that a reversal takes placebetween science and what comes to be calledliterature, in terms of the author and authority.What does he argue?
Author vs Writer vs Narrator"Everyone knows that, in a novel narrated inthe first person, neither the first-person pronounnor the present indicative refers exactly eitherto the writer or to the moment in which hewrites, but rather to an alter ego whosedistance from the author varies, often changingin the context of the work. It would be just aswrong to equate the author with the real writeras to equate him with the fictitious speaker; theauthor function is carried out and operates inthe scission itself, in this divisoin and thisdistance" (112).
TransdiscursivityWhat does this mean?How are Marx and Freud examples?How is this different from a scientific discourse?
Foucaults Proposals1. The author function reduces the danger thatfiction poses to the world.2. The author does notprecede the text.What is he talking about?!?And how does this relate tosocial science methods?!?