Barthes, in "The Death of the Author", helps to provide the link between two important subjects: the death of the author and textual unity. He notes in his essay how one who writes relates to the vast body of writing and knowledge already surrounding her:

"Succeeding the Author, the scriptor no longer bears within him passions, humours, feelings, impressions, but rather this immense dictionary from which he draws a writing that can know no halt: life never does more than imitate the book, and the book itself is only a tissue of signs, an imitation that is lost, infinitely deferred."

I believe in Barthes' connection between this "dictionary" and the possible death of the author. However, I take a more positive, active approach and assume, rather than an infinite deferral, an obscuring. In other words, the author does exist, but has become hidden amongst the tangled web of associations and contexts from which his writing emerges.

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