The Concept “Horizon of Expectations” of Jauss

Title The Concept “Horizon of Expectations” of Jauss
Abstract

The concept of”horizon of expectations”,which was brought forward by Jauss,had many sources, such as the explainations of Edmund Husserl, Martin Heideg-ger, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Karl Popper, Karl Mannheim, and so on. Because Jauss couldn’t give a definitive conclusion, this article tries to define a concept on the base of analyzing those viewpoints and Jauss’discussions. There are two illuminations about the form of”horizon of expectations”, and both of them have a corresponding relation in my opinion. However, Jauss can’t have an all-side view on the form of”horizon of expectations”. This article figures out that we can transcend the confines of literature experience to art experience and emphasize the impact of modern medium. Reading text is conditioned by the reader’s horizon and the reader integrates their own horizon with the textual horizon. The course of”fusion of horizons”carries the way though the logic of”ask”and”answer”, and the connection of reader and text is an intersubjective relation. On the one hand, the readers have different horizons. On the other hand, the text has rich meanings which afford many chances to reader. Jauss wanted to deal with the paradox of literature history and adopted the concept”effective literature history”and brought the reader’s horizon into literature history, which infused new blood into the writing of literature history. Jauss noticed the diachronic of literature development on the base of researching Russian Formalism’s theory, but the diachronic couldn’t solve the orientation of literature development. So Jauss adopted the synchronic to work out this problem, but Jauss failed. Some discussers seem that the force to boost the changes of horizon by accident, and this view is suspicious in my opinion. Jauss seemed that the horizon gap between reader and text determined the literature value, but Jauss got many critiques on this viewpoint. The result of those critiques, I think, is that the reader is”an assumed reader in advance”, a perfect reader, in Jauss’argumentation. In fact, the purpose that Jauss used a perfect reader to discuss the classical literature and popular literature is to illuminate the excitement of classical literature to reader, but Jauss might make an arbitrary decision on dealing with the literature value. The readers have different horizons, and IT implies that the text exists in different meanings. Some discussers think that stressing different meanings can be equated with canceling common comprehension and going to relativism. In order to avoid relativism, some discussers suggest that the author’s intention is an original principle and using this original principle to check interpretable validity. But following this principle could ignore some important elements,such as time distance, postmodern context, and so on. Reader is God, only interpretation which can be accepted by readers is validity interpretation.

Category Philosophy and Humanities
Subject define and form, horizon of expectations, interpretable validity, literature development, literature value, the fusion of horizons,
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Pages 120
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