1. KevinMcCormack
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    KevinMcCormack Member

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    Deconstruction Examples - ?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by KevinMcCormack, Mar 11, 2016.

    Hi:

    I've discovered I learn a lot from example deconstructions.

    I tried googling for texts or books that might offer collections of deconstructions, but haven't found anything yet.

    Does anybody know of any titles like this?

    Thanks.
    -KM
     
  2. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    This may or may not be what you're looking for, but check out a book called Deconstruction and Criticism. It contains a bunch of essays from famous critics, including Derrida himself. I'm sure they provide lots of examples.
     
  3. KevinMcCormack
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    KevinMcCormack Member

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    Ah. My mistake, sorry.

    I was thinking more of writing-craft-level deconstruction, rather than postmodernist cultural text analysis.

    I'm interested in what the author was intentionally doing when writing a novel.

    An example will probably help... An example I came across a few months ago was deconstruction of The Maltese Falcon. The critic broke it out into theme, subthemes, which characters were attached to which themes and subthemes, how many plot arcs were happening, how they were concluded in specific sequences, and so on. I mentioned it to a colleague, and she put me onto a second one addressing Pride And Prejudice. I found them extremely helpful for my stage of learning about novel construction.

    I may be using the wrong terminology?
     
  4. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    I thought you were referring to this. What you've described isn't considered deconstruction; it's really nothing more than an analysis. Based on your description, it would be easy to find what you're looking for with a simple Google search (name of book + "analysis").

    As an aside, keep in mind that the author's intention doesn't really matter because the reader is going to interpret the text based on his/her experiences (which may not include knowledge of the author's life or the circumstances behind the text). For example, you may find connections behind characters and themes that the critic did not, and your analysis would be just as valid (assuming you provide textual evidence, of course). So while it's perfectly fine to intentionally incorporate certain themes, etc., keep in mind that all analyses are biased and that the reader may find different connections and/or have different interpretations of the text.
     
  5. KevinMcCormack
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    KevinMcCormack Member

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    Hi, thanks, I'll try that. I was using 'deconstruction' as it was what the writers of the examples used, but it sounds like 'analysis' is the more common term.


    Yes, mainly I'm at the "so you want to learn how to write" stage. I find these analyses are a great way for me to understand the conceptual elements that authors take into consideration during the earlier stages of story and character development. I found them invaluable for connecting the dots between theory and practice.
     
  6. Rickey D. Clay Jr.
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    Rickey D. Clay Jr. Member

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    That was the first point I was going to mention, and you did so eloquently.

    I've written a few multilayered short stories with an initial theme in mind. People who read it and discussed it with me had very interesting interpretations. I couldn't (and wouldn't) tell them that their interpretation was wrong. Now, I may invite them to my state of mind at the time when I created my theme and explain my initial purpose. However, I had to appreciate any lucidly articulated alternatives. The beauty in what we do is the artistic element behind it. Art isn't linear, that's why I love it.

    Now, I do believe a foundation for dissecting a theme and analyzing a story can be....taught, to a degree. I am just of the school of thought that prefers to keep my pure artistic mind to do my analysis. Yes, the professors, writers, and the like that teach or write in this particular area are very good at what they do. The breakdowns are intelligent, intriguing, and diligent. Just as a musician or sound engineer develops a "trained ear" through years of being engulfed in their craft, an avid reader becomes trained in the process of analysis.

    Some of the best conversations are those of similar interests discussing their interpretations of the Mona Lisa or "Team Spirit" by Nirvana.

    Sorry I couldn't point you in the direction of your initial question in the thread, Kevin. lol. I wanted to join the conversation--it's a good one.
     

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