September 27, 2010
Singular Authorship is Nonexistent
An author is defined as the originator of any written work. Using this definition as the basis for my hypothesis, I believe there is no such thing as a single author in today’s society. It is absolutely impossible to produce a piece of literature, write your name on the top and claim sole responsibility for the creation of that work. Whether you believe it, or not, authorship is a team effort. There are always going to be traces of other people’s works, ideas, and themes within your writing, no matter whom you are. Within a single text, one can list an infinite amount of people that are, in someway, responsible for the creation of its existence. This is because prior readings and teachings are going to shape how you write and what you write. This concept is known as intertextuality and in this day in age, can be seen in all forms of literature, television, film and music. Rapper Plies thoroughly reinforces this point. One of his biggest hits, “She got it made” contains melodies and similar lyrics from artists that were popular decades before he became famous. In fact, after examining it closely, one might even consider his work to be plagiarism. However, one may not realize that all texts are products of intertextuality and that true authorship, the creation of completely original works, is no longer existent in this world. In spite of this, I believe good borrowers do exist. A writer can effectively use these prior readings and ideas to arrange them in a somewhat unique way that nobody has ever done before.
James E. Porter words authorship very nicely “The creative writer is the creative borrower”(110). Hip-hop artist Plies really seems to comprehend this notion and demonstrates it well in his hit single “She got it made”, a song in which Plies expresses he is trying to find a lady who he can treat well and provide with luxuries. Plies clearly borrows heavily on Rupert Holmes 1979 hit... [continues]
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