Concepts help organize and guide the study of works across the three areas of exploration. The concepts interact with the three areas of exploration in numerous ways and contribute a sense of continuity in the transition from one area to the next.
These explanations are not meant to be exhaustive, although they serve as a guiding set of ideas for the course.
The study of the connections among texts constitutes the focus of one of the three areas of exploration, namely intertextuality: connecting texts. The complex ways in which texts refer to one another, appropriate elements from each other and transform them to suit a different aesthetic or communicative purpose are evidence of the importance of transformation in the process of creating a text. Additionally, the act of reading is potentially transformative in itself, both for the text and the reader. Different readers may transform a text with their personal interpretation. The text, on the other hand, can have an impact on the reader, which potentially might lead to action and to the transformation of reality.
The way in which language and literature relate to reality has been the subject of much debate among linguists and literary theorists across time. Statements and manifestos by writers have made claims about this relationship, which range from affirming that literature should represent reality as accurately as possible to claiming art’s absolute detachment and freedom from reality and any duty to represent it in the work of art. Irrespective of such a discussion, the concept is a central one to the subject in connection with the way in which form and structure interact with, and relate to, meaning.