Project 1, Exercise 1: The Textual Revolution

Take a moment to think about the wider implications of this textual revolution.

1. What happens to a story when you take it from its source, make it permanent in print, and disseminate it to a wide audience?

  • there is potential for broader distribution
  • there are now roles for distributors, editors and translators in the process
  • the author loses the possibility of instant feedback and error-correction
  • there may be a need for interpretation with changes in context, time and place
  • there is loss of authorial control
  • there is potential for significant misunderstanding
  • the text may transcend its original time and place through language
  • questions around who will be the new readers, in what contexts?
  • at times, the printed word can bring a permanence to texts that should be, or were meant to be, transitory

2. Write a list of implications arising from the printing press. For example, think about who has control/authority over the text, the meaning of the text, and the relationship between the source of the text and its recipient.

  • all of the above, plus issues of cost, fees, mass production
  • potential for lack of access or censorship for some texts or for some audiences