In the following pages, I would like to explore two related questions that should be considered every time we are tempted to gloss a literary work such as the Decameron intertextually. The first question is one of method: when is a gloss necessary? What are the conditions in a work that require—rather than suggest, invite, or simply permit—that we bring a different text to its interpretation? The second question relates to the merit of the gloss: when is the intertext pertinent? How can we establish that a precise intertext is relevant to the understanding of the work we are studying? According to what parameters can we, in particular, advance the claim that an individual text rather than a permeating discourse, a book rather than common parlance, are to be taken into account? To put it another way, and in more essentially practical terms, when do we start looking for meaning outside the text? And most importantly, when do we stop looking for it?
"Boccaccio’s Vernacular Classicism: Intertextuality and Interdiscoursivity in the Decameron,"
Heliotropia - An online journal of research to Boccaccio scholars:
1, Article 3.
Available at: http://scholarworks.umass.edu/heliotropia/vol7/iss1/3