Author and editor of nearly forty books, Jerome McGann is the John Stewart Bryan University Professor at the University of Virginia. His most recent work includes Are the Humanities Inconsequent? A Reading of Marx’s Riddle of the Dog and Byron’s Manfred. He is also responsible for the online academic archive The Complete Writings and Pictures of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, which is in its four installment phase.
Introduction to Marking Texts of Many Dimensions
Although “text” has been a “Keyword” in clerical and even popular discourse for more than fifty years, it did not find a place in Raymond Williams’ important (1976) book Keywords. This strange omission may perhaps be explained by the word’s cultural ubiquity and power. In that lexicon of modernity Williams called the “Vocabulary of Culture and Society”, “text” has been the “one word to rule them all.” Indeed, the word “text” became so shape-shifting and meaning-malleable that we should probably label it with Tolkein’s full rubrication: “text” has been, and still is, the “one word to rule them all and in the darkness bind them.”
The Poetic Book: Medieval, Modern, Postmodern | November 16, 2006