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6 Intermedialität und mediale Dominanz: typologisch, funktionsgeschichtlich und akademisch-institutionell betrachtet [2010]

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[The essay applies the concept of ‘dominance’, which is of general cultural-historical importance, to the notion of intermediality in three respects: a) with reference to typological forms of intermediality as viewed from a systematic point of view; b) with reference to the same typological forms, considered from a functional historical perspective; and c) with reference to academic discourses and research. A) It is argued that among the four principal forms of intermediality, intermedial transposition and intermedial reference necessarily imply the dominance of one of the media involved, while in the other two forms (transmediality and plurimediality) this is only an optional possibility. B) Historical examples of the dominance of the verbal medium ‘book’ in the form of the Bible in the Christian Middle Ages as well as of the opera in the 18th century and of the novel in the 19th century are given, and it is argued that since the second half of the 20th century film has assumed the leading role. C) In some academic contexts, intermediality studies have been used in order to broaden the perspective on literature (which the author still considers the dominant medium in philological studies) while in other contexts, e. g. by the leader of the Montreal-based Centre de recherche sur l’intermédialité, Silvestra Mariniello, intermediality research has been instrumentalized for the demise of the alleged dominance of literature, a polemic stance which the author criticizes as problematic and counter-productive for intermediality studies at large.] 



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