The boundaries of digital authorship: Agency, effacement and power
Giamo, Thomas Crane
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This thesis is about the conditions of authorship in the digital era; it aspires to examine the role of authorship beyond Roland Barthes' "Death of the Author," a landmark essay that attacked the textual authority and interpretive control of the analogue author and has come to be regarded as a defining moment in post-structuralist and, more broadly, postmodernist critical theory. My point of departure is predicated on the fact that we are now beyond Postmodernism--historically and, to a lesser extent, conceptually--and therefore outside of the death of the author. The entrance into the digital era has introduced a new technological, social and economic landscape wherein the figure of the author has become resuscitated and, in a word, distributed. In particular, this thesis has been designed to address the issue of the author's agency, the digital logic of textual objects and their mode of production, transmission and storage, and the performance of power at play between the digital author and the digital reader.