Ontological Boundaries and Methodological Leaps: The Importance of Possible Worlds Theory for Hypertext Fiction (and Beyond)

Critical Writing
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Abstract (in English): 
This essay sets out an ontologically centered approach to Storyspace hypertext fiction by applying Ryan’s (1991) model of Possible Worlds Theory to two canonical texts [...] Shelley Jackson’s Patchwork Girl (1995) and Stuart Moulthrop’s Victory Garden (1991). The analyses show how the Possible Worlds Theory method allows the study of hypertext fiction to move away from the chronological focus of traditional narrative theory to address the ontological mechanics of hypertext narratives. The chapter closes by suggesting ways in which Possible Worlds Theory might also be used as an analytical tool for other forms of digital literature.

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Eric Dean Rasmussen