The Pleasure in/of the Text: About the Joys and Perversities of Reading

Fabien Arribert-Narce (Editor), Fuhito Endo (Editor), Kamila Pawlikowska (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportBook

Abstract

Reading is a peculiar kind of experience. Although its practice and theory have a very long tradition, the question of aesthetic pleasure is as perplexing as ever. Why do we read? What exactly thrills us in the text? One of the most prominent scholars having addressed these questions in the twentieth century is undeniably Roland Barthes, who distinguished between the «ordinary» pleasure of reading and bliss (jouissance), a delight so profound that it cannot be expressed in words. Taking his work as a central reference, and revisiting some of his seminal publications on the subject such as Empire of Signs (1970) and The Pleasure of the Text (1973), this collection of essays adopts a similar interdisciplinary approach to explore a broad range of themes and issues related to the notion of readerly enjoyment, between form and content, emotion and reason, escapist and knowledge-seeking responses to the text: how do literary and ideological pleasures intersect? In what ways do perversions, madness or even fatigue contribute to the pleasure of the text? How do writing and signs, sense and significance, but also image and text interact in the intermedial process of reading? How can paratexts – i.e. the margins of the text, including footnotes – and metatexts play a part in the reader’s enjoyment?
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherPeter Lang
Number of pages181
ISBN (Electronic)9781789977271
ISBN (Print)9781789977004
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 24 Sep 2021

Publication series

NameEuropean Connections: Studies in Comparative Literature, Intermediality and Aesthetics
Volume43
ISSN (Print)1424-3792

Keywords

  • Pleasure of the Text
  • reading
  • contemporary literature
  • Roland Barthes
  • comparative literature
  • critical theory
  • intermediality

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  • Introduction

    Arribert-Narce, F., Endo, F. & Pawlikowska, K., 24 Sep 2021, The Pleasure in/of the Text: About the Joys and Perversities of Reading. Arribert-Narce, F., Endo, F. & Pawlikowska, K. (eds.). Oxford: Peter Lang, p. 1-11 10 p. (European Connections: Studies in Comparative Literature, Intermediality and Aesthetics; vol. 43).

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingOther chapter contribution

  • Taking signs for what they are: Roland Barthes, Chris Marker and the pleasure of ‘Texte Japon’

    Arribert-Narce, F., 24 Sep 2021, The Pleasure in/of the Text: About the Joys and Perversities of Reading. Arribert-Narce, F., Fuhito, E. & Pawlikowska, K. (eds.). Oxford: Peter Lang, p. 107-127 20 p. (European Connections: Studies in Comparative Literature, Intermediality and Aesthetics; vol. 43).

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

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