Metatext

The Metatext for any website encompasses the entire Web, plus all the texts outside of the Web. For example, this text exists in the larger world of the metatext and is created by the small world of lexia.

On the Web, lexia consist of individual pages. The term page is used very loosely however.  For example a standard 8 1/2” x 11” sheet of paper is commonly called a page.  However a web page can be 3” x 4”, 12”x 24”, or 36” x 10”.  There is no fixed space. Therefore lexia very considerably in size and scope depending on the intention of the author (how the page was programmed) and the manner in which the reader views the page (the technology used by the reader).

On the web, lexia are connected to specific aspects or portions of the metatext via both internal and external links.  For example, a good deal of this web site deals with the theories of George P. Landow. ++ By including a link to his web site, I am referencing a specific part of the metatext of this project: the writing and theories of Landow. In much the same way, other portions of this project are linked to portions of the metatext.

Additionally, other websites might reference this website as either supporting text (lexia) or as references to metatext for their text. Theoretically, there is no limit to the number of connections that can be generated between texts - both explicitly and implicitly. Paper created texts have always referenced the implicit metatext and in some cases such as T.S. Eliot’s The Wasteland included explicit references to the metatext as well. On the Web, the metatext, the text, and the lexia all enjoy equal status and equal importance.