ⓘ Paraliterature


ⓘ Paraliterature

Paraliterature comprises written works dismissed as not literary. It includes commercial fiction, popular fiction, pulp fiction, comic books and, most notably, genre fiction with works of science fiction, fantasy, mystery and others.:361


1. Introduction of Term

The term was introduced by art critic and scholar Rosalind Krauss in her text Poststructuralism and the "Paraliterary" 1980. Krauss inagurated the genre to allow for a juxtaposition of the works of Roland Barthes and Jacques Derrida. Krauss argues the paraliterary is the space of debate, quotation, partisanship, betrayal, reconciliation; but it is not the space of unity, coherence, or resolution that we think of as constituting the work of literature.:37 She links the paraliterary to postmodern literature, noting it is not surprising that the medium of a postmodernist literature should be the critical text wrought into a paraliterary form.:37


2. Criticism

On the term "paraliterature", Ursula K. Le Guin commented that "it exists. What Im saying is that I dont want to perpetuate this division. So I would always put it in quotes, or do something to show that Im rejecting a word that I have to use".:182