In many, especially English, defamation cases, the court often speaks of "the average reader", "the reasonable reader" or similar concepts, which does not refer to any flesh-and-blood reader of the defamatory text, but is a type of construct of what the court thinks would be the normal reaction of a person to an allegedly defamatory text. This concept is compared to a similar phenomenon found in literary theory in the persona of the implied reader, created by the (implied) author as having a given set of values which will lead to an appreciative interpretation of the literary work. The paper compares the parallel concepts in the two fields.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Language and Linguistics