These past couple of days, we've been looking at some fairly abstract art and seemingly harmless short stories and delving into them for a deeper understanding of their hidden meanings. This brings up a point that I've considered before, but never in any great amount of detail: do authors and artists intend half (or even any) of the interpretations people take from their work? When I was a kid I loved The Hobbit because I thought Tolkien had come up with an extraordinary, captivating story with a cutesy, sugary coating. After rereading it a month ago, I realized how meaningful the morals and lessons of the story really are.
So the question is: which came first, the story or the moral? That's obviously left up to the author, but what if people take more meaning from stories than was originally intended? It makes it seem like the majority of the lessons we've learned were actually derived from our own subconcious. I guess that just goes to show the importance of literature. Without it, we wouldn't know half the things we already know.
8 years ago