Critical Lens

Better Essays
In the process of writing, regardless of the form it takes, thesis or narrative for example, the purpose of the piece has several lenses that shape how the reader perceives the material. Of the less important lenses that shape the piece, mood, word choice, and rhetoric are only a few. These elements of the work, while minimal in a relative sense, accomplish the same as other, more important components, they influence how the reader perceives the material, how it is understood. If one is to effectively convey the message of the piece, one must first look at how the any reader perceives any text. This idea of how the reader perceives is a culmination of all the devices employed by the author. The idea is for the author to craft an aggregate…show more content…
This idea of crafting a mask in literature is an old concept, though rarely discussed directly as it can even be seen in Corinthians where, as discussed by Stephan Joubert, Paul acts as, “…an encoded author…”, that can be typified also as, “…the ‘ideal portrait’ which the real author entertains to his flesh-and-blood readers” (Joubert). This concept of an author for an author is another concept that must be taken into account when the mask is discussed. Where Killingsworth suggests that the author crafts, “…the mask of the author…”, he also crafts, “…a mask for the audience…” (Killingsworth 34-35), Joubert argues that the mask of the reader is simply a result of the authors own mask as, “…a potential reader is expected to play in order to actualize the text…” (Joubert) reacting only to the text and crafting their own mask. While the reader also has a mask in Joubert’s theory, it is a reaction to the text, rather than them slipping into one of the authors design, the author only being able to influence their mask from an external and past, perspective. I implore both students and faculty to focus on these points throughout a work, as they will show the reader the perspective that the author is crafting. Weather to use this mask is up to the reader’s discretion, though from an analytical view, being bias only harms the process. Regardless, it remains important that the student not only identify but act upon these
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