Rereading 'A Rose for Emily' from the Perspective of Wolfgang Iser's Reader Response Theory

Sura M. Khrais


The aim of this paper is to examine Iser's 'reader response' theory with special focus on Iser's concept of 'dynamic reading' and 'blanks' as major narrative devices. The researcher will discuss how blanks or gaps function, through applying Iser's theory on William Faulkner's "A Rose for Emily". She will discuss how gaps in characters and events engage the reader in a dynamic process of reading which leads to revealing the text's meaning. This paper is an application of text-reader interaction which, as Iser states, generates meaning. It is worth mentioning here that Iser views meaning as an effect to be experienced rather than an object to be defined. It is here where Iser's contribution to the world of criticism becomes clear. He redirects focus from the text as an object to the subjectivity of the reader.   


Iser's Reader Response Theory, Dynamic Reading, Blanks, Text-Reader Interaction

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