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Donald Francis McKenzie (1931—1999) bibliographer and literary scholar

intentional fallacy



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authorial intention

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A position that argues that the creator of a text possesses a privileged understanding of its meaning and that consequently any interpretation that contradicts this understanding must defer to the author's intentions. This position has been criticized for its assumption that authors can ever be fully conscious of the meaning of what they produce and for ignoring or underplaying the contribution that the purposes of readers make to the understanding of a text. See also audience determinism; intentional fallacy.

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