straight up
"Hypertext... changes our sense of authorship, authorial property, and creativity by moving
away from the constrictions of
page-bound technology."
Mark Amerika's hyperfiction and Net
artwork, Grammatron

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George Landow | Intertextualities <1987>

George Landow has done much to pave the way for the critical acceptance of hypermedia as a medium for creative and academic writing. A noted literary theorist from Brown University, Landow introduced the potential of hypermedia to a generation of writers and scholars eager to explore the medium's possibilities. His protégé includes noted hyperfiction author Mark Amerika, who began pioneering forms of interactive writing with such works as Grammatron, while studying hypertext at Brown University. Landow also helped develop the Intermedia software system in 1987, one of the first authoring tools for creating interactive texts.

In his critical writings, Landow describes how hypertext transforms the text into a complex network of paragraphs, sentences and fragments of "textual units" or "lexias." The reader's ability to freely explore this network, and disrupt the linearity of the text enables a dramatic shift from what he regards as hierarchical, centralized, and author-dominated literary forms. Landow describes this new form as "intertextualities," a terrain where the boundaries between literary works dissolve as they join into a single, vast "docuverse."