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Date: Wed, 18 Dec 2002 09:35:49 -0500 (EST)
From: Michael Straight 
Subject: Re: (urth) apologies

On Tue, 17 Dec 2002, maa32 wrote:

> Indeed, I have half a mind to say that perhaps we should all ignore it and
> take a New Critical approach, saying that "he changed his mind and it doesn't
> affect the work of art." The other half of me, of course, believes that the
> author always has authority ...

I always look at it like this: If you're having a discussion about what
the author intended, then a remark from the author can bring about a
conclusion to the argument.

You can always then turn to an argument about what the author *ought* to
have meant (i.e. that a different interpretation is better, more coherent,
etc.), but some people aren't interested in that type of discussion.

Neither interest nor lack of interest in whether a given interpretation
might be better than the author's intention should be labled as Right or
Wrong, unless you've discovered an objective aesthetic standard.  In which
case, please contact me right away.

-- Rostrum


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