Do you like mirrors?
Do you feel comfortable infront of the mirror?
I think this a valid question to ask, not only when you are planning a new weight-lose regimine, but when we discuss criticim. Literary criticism.
Only the author will understand/ appreciate the core, (whether they are concious of it or not) the art work (in this case a novel) is a representation of themselves for the world to see…they have an ownership to that piece of art that no one else (however studious a critique or devoted a fan) will ever be able to reach.
As a writer, and poet myself I have been amused to hear people’s interpretation’s of my work. Placing so much attention and meaning behind a word, structure or image that was not meant to be the main focus.
So why even anylise in the first place? Why put in all the time or the effort of accute observation?
To know ourselves.
Let me explain with an example:
I had a wonderful conversation with an aquantence here in Cambridge, we got to talking about movies and that led us to Joseph Conrad’s novella, Heart of Darkness.
I identified that the novella was about an ‘overreacher’ that fell. how the best and presumably great man of all Europe could fall so low when given a situation without restraints–who are you at the core
she saw it in a completly feminine light. Focusing on the sparce female characters in the novel she hated how Conrad typified women as secretaries (in the whited seplechure), wild queens (african woman) or a sait that needed to be protected as an embodiment of innocence (Kurtz’s intended)
Both are true. My perspective does not negate her perspective and her interpretation does not undermine mine.
We see what we see because of who we are.
If given teh same object and without personally changing the object (inventing events or character/situations) then our critisism (reaction both heart and mind) will show us who we are. It will show what we value. How we think.
LIterary, multimedia criticism will help us see eye to eye–not proving one interpretation is true and another false (that is for the author to decide) but to see eye-to-eye with ourselves, like in a mirror.