Shelley Jackson’s Patchwork Girl demonstrates how intertextual allusions are used as piecework in order to construct new literatures together from various sources of the past. Presented in hypertext format, Patchwork Girl uses intertextual allusions borrowed from canonical texts such as Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and L. Frank Baum’s Patchwork Girl of Oz to create a new work inspired by and in reference to Shelley and Baum’s works, reinterpreting their ideas and making them modern. The work of Patchwork Girl proves that literature has always been intertextual – writers have forever been influenced by other writers. We are all only standing on the shoulders of giants.
nov·el /ˈnävəl/ noun
1. a fictitious prose narrative of book length, typically representing character and action with some degree of realism.
2. new or unusual in an interesting way.
Poet Ezra Pound once wrote, “The artist is always beginning. Any work of art which is not a beginning, an invention, or a discovery is of little worth.” The very word “novel” implies innovation; in fact, the first printed novels were thus named for their specific cutting-edge contemporary style of writing. The novel itself (which was different from the other books available at the time of their invention, which included but were limited to *mostly* Bibles, ancient plays or works of poetry, or books of science or history) has gone through many iterations over the years, evolving from Gothic romance stories of the 19th century to modern series’ and now experimental novels.
This work Pry, though it is digital literature, can be considered [a] “novel” by some, in the way that it is taking the tradition of storytelling via literature and “making it new” (“novel” here meaning new, as well as a book) .
The student committee for Digital Humanities held an event addressing the idea of “What is Digital Humanities?: A Conversation” in Love Library last Thursday. The student branch is a network of DH scholars, researchers, teachers, and students at SDSU and in the region that seeks to study digital technologies, employ conceptual practices in research, and reflect upon the impact of the digital. Dr. Pam Lach, Dr. Adam Hammond and Dr. Nathan Rodriguez comprised a panel of experts on Digital Humanities here at SDSU and their presentations shed some light on the growing field of Digital Humanities. This was the first in a series of events the Digital Humanities Collaborative (DHC) plans to hold over the course of this school year.
Margaret Larlham is a director and playwright at San Diego State University. Her scripts are adapted from children’s literature have a strong focus on physicality and cultural diversity.
Larlham was born and educated in South Africa, and taught in the Speech and Drama Department at the University of Natal in Durban, South Africa prior to moving to San Diego in 1986. Continue reading