An "Erotics" of Theory : Technological Paradigms for Comparative Literature

Eugene Chen EOYANG

Research output: Book Chapters | Papers in Conference ProceedingsBook ChapterResearchpeer-review


Two perspectives on the relationship between technology and literature may be represented by the following positions (Heim 1993, 7). In the Written Word, Stephen White claims that a "writer of any kind who does not work on a word processor is either dead broke or some kind of fool" (White 1984, 68). While Gore Vidal, in the New York Review of Books (March 1984, 20), insists that "the word processor is erasing literature." Technology appears either as the angel of creation or the destroyer of the imagination - two extremes between which most of us would situate ourselves. For me, the test of value - whether technology is, or is not, an aid to the literary imagination - begins with considering whether today's technology is or is not a constructive metaphor for creative thinking. If metaphor is fructifying, then technology may be considered a boon to literature. However, if metaphor is stultifying, then technology can be considered as inimical to literature.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCybernetic ghosts : literature in the age of theory and technology
EditorsDorothy M. FIGUEIRA
PublisherBYU Press
ISBN (Print)9780842525916
Publication statusPublished - 2004
EventState of the Art Conference : Literature in an Age of Theory and Technology - United States, Georgia, United States
Duration: 7 Jun 20029 Jun 2002

Publication series

NameInternational Studies in Literary Culture
PublisherInternational Comparative Literature Association (ICLA)


ConferenceState of the Art Conference : Literature in an Age of Theory and Technology
Country/TerritoryUnited States
OtherUniversity of Georgia


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