Hypertext Fiction

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The Rise and Fall of Hypertext Fiction

The Rise and Fall of Hypertext Fiction


The purpose of this paper is to enlighten the rise and fall of hypertext fiction. The paper aims to discuss the origin of hypertext fiction and its influence on the readers. Nevertheless, the paper will explore the rise of hypertext fiction along with the fall encountered by this genre due to its severe criticism. The concept of hypertext fiction emerged from the growth of computerized environment that changed the face of literature and amended the style of reading. According to diverse sources, hypertext fiction is more flexible than the traditional style of reading; moreover, the rise of hypertext fiction offers a new way of reading literature. The characteristics of hypertext writing can be found in the field of hypertext fiction [1].

Hypertext fiction is termed as a contemporary genre of literature whose existence is witnessed since a decade. However, there are several gradual developments required in hypertext fiction; especially, in the United Kingdom. Nevertheless, several UK based writers have already published works through hyper-textual diskette and began to reflect the particularities of this contemporary genre of literature. Nevertheless, for some writers in UK the development of hypertext fiction is barely underway. This discrepancy is probably due to a reluctance of acceptability of this genre as it violates the traditional concepts of reading.

2 The Rise of Hypertext Fiction

The hypertext fiction engulfs traditional division of fiction into chapters, scenes, descriptions, and paragraphs, etc. The hyper-textual work offsets the limits of the screen providing the reader with new opportunities that cannot be offered by the books [2]. The hypertext form of literature offers a depth to the reader through diverse dimensions; hence, it provides enhanced utility to the reader by portraying the story in multiple dimensions called hyperspace. With the passage of time, hypertext fiction enhanced it popularity among the readers; however, due to severe criticism a line was drawn among the readers that prefer traditional literature reading and the ones that favour hypertext fiction.

In 1991, Tim Berners-Lee, a British computer scientist working at the CERN particle physics lab in Geneva, Switzerland, introduced the World Wide Web. The Web provided a graphical interface for users of computers that were linked globally through the Internet, which had been developed over several decades. The Web also introduced the public to the concept of hyperlinks, which highlight text or images on a Web page to connect readers to other relevant sites [1]. The extensive use of the Web gave way to a variety of new sources of reading. Search engines such as Google allowed users to search through millions of Web sites quickly to find the desired reading materials.

With the proliferation of blogs, social networking sites and a seemingly unlimited supply of audio and video materials, some advocates of traditional reading habits began to worry about the future of the literature. The traditional form of fiction; however, have had greater difficulty making the transition to electronic formats ...
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