Hyperliterature and Intermediality in the Expansion of Literary Production

Hyperliterature and Intermediality in the Expansion of Literary Production

Luci Collin (Universidade Federal do Parana, Parana, Brazil)
Copyright: © 2019 |Pages: 15
DOI: 10.4018/IJSVR.2019070105
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The so-called ‘Information Revolution,' which begun in the 1990s and generated a global system of expansion of the virtual space, imposed reconfigurations on artistic expressions. In regard to literature, one sees not only the transposition of consecrated genres and textual forms into digital media, but also the creation of a specifically digital literature, one that is often marked by intermediality. The present article aims at approaching concepts such as ‘hypertext' and ‘hyper-writing', and the phenomena linked to digital textualities as ‘hyperfiction', ‘hyperpoetry', ‘holopoetry' and ‘hyperdrama', among others; besides, it also raises the question: to what extent does hyperliterature interfere with the status of “conventional literature” written and read in paper?
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In 1987, in his book La Machine Univers, Pierre Lévy already referred to a creature that creates itself out of the novelties and possibilities of the technocosmos, in confrontation with the “transcendental dimension of computing”: the Homo informaticus (1998, p. 16). In the early 1990s, there is a growing interest in describing the process of cultural mutation that was outlined with the emerging cyberspace - a space where, differently from the classic media, messages are interactive, have unprecedented plasticity and speed, and enable the user to be a sender agent, connected to endless receivers who, in turn, are also agents and senders themselves. It is the advent of the “universal without totality”, the “collective intelligence” which is no longer univocal, of the One and All type but, rather, the All and All type.

Today, “browsing is necessary” and we interact in a “synergy between social life and electronic devices” (LEMOS, p. 11). After new technological devices brought about by the computing culture in a virtual society of non-linear webs, the Computing Era inaugurates new forms of socialization, knowledge and subjectivity, and establishes a meaning that is both composed and recomposed within shifting borders; fundamental cognitive activities are reconfigured by digital mediation and thus our relationship with language and creativity is restructured.

In the late 20th Century, for the development of new technologies from a humanistic perspective, artists and users were asked to be receptive to new developments and tried to “acknowledge the qualitative changes in the ecology of signs, the unprecedented environment that results from the extension of new communication networks to social and cultural life.” (Lévy, 2014, p. 12). New technologies have renewed (and continue to renew) their revolutionary potential to explore artistic languages that are mediated by hypercontextualization. In literature, as the text is transformed, many questions arise: Is paper literature - or, as Canclini (2013) renames it, “pre-digital literature” - anachronistic today, is this a front of resistance to cultural industry? If literature is aesthetic emotion and not information, how is it going to survive in the Information Age? How can the writer talk about durable experiences in a society of hyperexposure and ephemeral values? Without any claim to answer these questions, my intention is a different and specific one: to investigate how literature has expanded with the new perspectives introduced by the dynamic mutation of cyberculture.

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