In his article, "On Literariness: From Post-Structuralism to Systems Theory," Marko Juvan argues that the question of literariness concerns the very identity and social existence of not only literature per se but of literary theory as a discipline. A literary theorist is not only an observer of literature; he/she is also a participant who -- at least indirectly, via the a priori systems of science and education -- is engaged in constructing both the notion and the practice of literature as well as the study of literature. Literariness is neither an invariant cluster of "objectively" distinctive properties of all texts that are deemed literary nor is it merely a social, scholarly, and/or educational function. Rather, it can be defined as the effect of a text in the literary system, which is only possible on the basis of paradigms and conventions derived from the literary canon itself.

CLCWeb: Comparative Literature and Culture is published by Purdue University Press ©Purdue University in open access. Please support the journal: Click here for more information and to make your donation online.