Thursday, May 04, 2006

In science, the value of an experiment lies in its potential effects on an established theory.

In literature, experimental writing is valued for its potential to transform mainstream writing?

1 comment:

Anonymous Brigham Young said...

Or one could consider "experimental" in terms of process--experimental writing employs a high level of chance in its production, though this may not have any effect on 'mainstream' writing and may not always be apparent in the resulting 'product'. From my conversations with people who write 'mainstream' verse, intentionality is often an issue: 'I wrote a poem about...I want to write a poem about...(some discrete topic)' There seems to be a lot of predetermined affect in their methods.

I find it more likely that 'experimental' writing is its own scientific community, with its own methods, goals and hierarchies of value that are incompatible with those of 'mainstream' writing. re: the analogy--science vs. what is not science. 'Experimental' writing might not be valued for its potential to transform mainstream writing, but precisely the opposite, that it might resist appropriation or serve to invigorate or challenge other innovative writing. The more mainstream writing stays static, the less experimental writing needs to consider it as an 'other' from which to draw oppositional value.