This essay starts by surveying different approaches to the concept of doxa–those developed by Roland Barthes, Charles Grivel, Marc Angenot,but also Daniel Castillogy Durante–and by showing that the termdoxa is used to designate a system of beliefs as well as a specific ideological maxim. It proceeds to emphasize the connection of doxa to the question of stereotype and its crucial role in the process of reading. Doxa can be assimilated to ideological stereotypes and, as such, does not reduce to content inscribed in the text; it also functions as a tool in meaning construction and in evaluation if not as the very condition of literary reading insofar as the latter relies on a sacralization of literature. Finally, doxa appears as a valuable tool for the analysis of reading effects when we consider its modes of enunciation. The essay thus compares the innocent doxa in a text by Edouard Bled with the distanced doxa in a text by Jean Cau and/or the ambivalent doxa in Enfance by Nathalie Sarraute(each of which is presented in the Appendix). However, it concludes on the idea that the perception of these effects primarily depends on the reader's ideological flexibility.
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Research Article| September 01 2002
Jean-Louis Dufays; Received Ideas and Literary Reception: The Functions of Doxa in the Understanding and Evaluation of Texts. Poetics Today 1 September 2002; 23 (3): 443–464. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/03335372-23-3-443
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