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Posts Tagged ‘michael jackson’

… there has been a reluctance to consider historical narratives as what they most manifestly are: verbal fictions, the contents of which are as much,invented as found and the forms of which have more in common with their counterparts in literature than they have with those in the sciences.

Hayden White, The Historical Text as Literary Artifact

I’m in this class where we’re learning about theories for literary criticism.  Your Derridas and Foucaults and your Bakthins and your Marxes and your Judith Butlers and your Edward Saids… Hopefully you get the picture.  Like most writers who take the class, I find the stuff really interesting and irrelevant for craft.  But still really interesting. Last week we read New Historicist theory (or was it Cultural Studies? Blech) and I especially liked this guy, Hayden White, for figuring out, or being one of the first to write down the idea that history is not fact but narrative.  (Think: Michael Jackson’s HIStory.)

I’m not sure if other fiction writers out there face stuff like this, but once I told this woman that I was a writer and she said she’d like to read my work.  Then I told her I was a fiction writer and she said, sorrowfully, “I don’t read fiction.”

Huh.

So then this dude comes along and says that history is put together in the same way one puts together a fictional narrative.  Makes sense.  I’d like to write more about this, connect it to how Jesus was a fiction writer if he really made up the parables, but I’m just going to throw the quote out there for now.

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