José Augusto Mourão



Text is dead

The artificial and the natural


Reconfiguring narrative

Hypertextual organisation



Mainly since the 60's and 70's, the radical abandonment of "manifestos" and the attraction of the eclectic mixture of styles and the fusion of distinct artistic areas is somewhat clear. Hybridization means that "The non-semantic, the spatial, the polymedial, and the creolized open new registers in possibility for the text" (1). José Jimenez, in his text called The Revolution of the electronic art , makes reference to the mutable nature of the new forms of materiality of the digital image, radically different from the weight of the image as picture, embodied in multidimensionality. The integration of language, image and sound on the same horizon of perception reveals the possibility of complete synesthesia . Current interactive works only make any sense because they are founded in a dialogic mode that enables the user's integration in the virtual structure of cybernetics feed-back . Equally important is the traditional structure of interactivity in stabilizing the classic spaces of art, built in a one-dimensional system of stimuli-reaction. What is really at stake here is the emergence of a transversal paradigm in digital art: hybridizing. Hybridization has become the key to rationalize total immersion in a simulated world, from the moment when all positions are transferable and all frontiers solved by the binary operator.

We have clearly entered a new era of literature's landscape. But there is a question that still remains and which Glazier puts in a very pertinent way: "Our idea of the digital literary work is confined by literary practice that has become habitual by nature; thus it is hard to see something anew and then part with old habits. The hard choice before us is to identify new forms of literature, expand our habits, and not be restricted to old forms in new clothes". Is all electronic literature innovative? (2) New productivity crosses all domains, from biology to art; is it the dawn of a new age of form, or the final decomposition of all forms, in combination and hybridism? It is therefore pertinent, in the current conditions of globalization, to use the concept of hybridization and cross-breeding. Hybridization, as process of transaction and intersection saves multiculturalism from segregation and instead nurtures interculturalism. A bright theory of hybridization is inseparable from a critical conscience of its frontiers, of what it allows, and what may or may not be hybridised (3). Hybridization is today, in the field of media, a constant; it is no longer the exception, but a central form of communication and knowledge, especially of new media. Today, social and textual networks circumscribe digital intertextuality in cyberspace. Hypermedia has, concomitantly, penetrated our daily life, on a regional, national and global scale. And it does so through specific social networks. A text is the converging point of either raw institutional speeches, or of other texts. One of these spaces of discursive convergence is the Internet, where the sciences, the techniques and the arts meet and hybridize. There are today textual and social networks that, togheter, circunscribe cyberspace in a digital social-intertextuality. On the Internet there is a metamorphosis between the natures of art and literature. Today, a literary or artistic piece cannot achieve the global audience if it's not exposed on e -books , virtual exhibitions and digital museums. Cyber-literature is conceived as a process, where continuous interpretations and reinterpretations of interconnected literary documents take place, and where relations allow the reader to travel between narrative connections (Nelson, 1992: 2-8).


(1) Loss Pequeño Glazier, op. cit ., p. 177.

(2) Loss Pequeño Glazier, Digital Poetics, The making of E-Poetries , Univ. Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa and London , 2002, p. 178.

(3) Néstor García Cancilini, Culturas híbridas , Nova edição, Paidós Estado y Sociedad, 2005.