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    The Aesthetics of Metadata in Contemporary Fiction: Reference, Redaction, and the Archive

    Eve, Martin Paul (2017) The Aesthetics of Metadata in Contemporary Fiction: Reference, Redaction, and the Archive. In: Postgraduate Research Seminar, 31 May 2017, University of Buckingham. (Unpublished)

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    What are metadata? Usually described as “data about data” or “second-order data”, most people have encountered the term with respect to government surveillance programmes. As the Prime Minister of Australia once remarked that it was important to “be clear about what this so-called metadata is. It's not the content of the letter, it's what is on the envelope”. In this talk, Martin Paul Eve will explore how various aesthetic qualities of metadata seep into our reading practices around contemporary fiction. Ranging from redaction in Mark Blacklock’s I’m Jack through to analeptic reference in Emily St Mandel’s Station Eleven up to the inter-textual presentation of the archive in David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas, the ways in which readers are conditioned by various metadata-like structures, this talk will argue, are legion. Indeed, as I will show, the deductions that readers can make, in our data- and metadata- structured present, from “what is on the envelope” are far more than we might usually imagine.


    Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
    School: School of Arts > English, Theatre and Creative Writing
    Depositing User: Martin Eve
    Date Deposited: 15 May 2017 17:36
    Last Modified: 28 May 2017 13:22


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