One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
nounthe intentional fallacy
(in literary theory) the fallacy of basing an assessment of a work on the author's intention rather than on one's response to the actual work.
- ‘His meaning-as-use formulation, for instance, hilariously commits the intentional fallacy: the meaning is limited by the speaker's intentions, which is clearly not true.’
- ‘Beardsley thought this theory correct and used it to argue that the intentional fallacy is indeed a fallacy.’
- ‘One concept of literary theory that is underused in music criticism is the intentional fallacy: the belief that the author's intent is not the singular truthful interpretation for a work.’
- ‘Besides, there's also the whole intentional fallacy.’
- ‘In effect, Forman allowed him to remain an enigma while ingeniously exploiting the intentional fallacy.’
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