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English (Year 12) - Course Concepts

Ben Whitten

What is an interpretation?

An interpretation simply refers to the meanings made from texts. There is a very diverse range of factors based on one's context which can influence a text's interpretation (varying from person to person), meaning that meanings wildly vary and can even conflict with one another. Considering the different factors that can contribute to an individual's interpretation is necessary to understand how meanings can differ.

What can influence an individual's interpretation of a text?

  • Personal context

  • Genre expectations (past experiences, predictions)

  • Purpose of the text

  • Cultural, political, religious, psychological and social factors impacting on the texts' creator and viewers

  • Individual values and attitudes

  • Construction of a text (use of structural, language, generic and stylistic features)

  • Themes, ideas, issues and concepts explored in the text

  • Inclusions, omissions, emphases, and marginalisations explored in the text

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