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Abstract

In her article "Old and New Materialities in Foer's Tree of Codes" Kiene Brillenburg Wurth analyzes how intermediality works — not what it "is" — in the analysis of literary texts. How intermedial can texts "do," precisely when they consist only of words? Do such texts compel us to reconsider literature as a verbal art? Her analysis focuses on a recent book by Jonathan Safran Foer: Tree of Codes (2010), a literary work cut out of the remains of Bruno Schulz's Street of Crocodiles (1934). Brillenburg Wurth points out how intermediality works as a productive interaction not only between verbal, visual, and sculptural arts, but also between analog and digital media. She argues that this interaction signals a larger concern with bookness and paper materiality in the present of the age of screens and electronic textualities. Is this concern a sign of nostalgia, of the book coming to an end, or of an unsuspected vitality of paper-based literature?

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