A principle such as authorial intention cannot serve as a central criterion for the constitution of a text, if in the end the editor can apprehend it only through artistic intuition (Fränkel) or through the intimacy of personal association (Brod) or direct revelation (Hebling). The author‘s intention, which changes over time, may only speculatively be established on the basis of the written record (or indeed against the written record). In addition, the problem is thus merely shifted from the philological to the psychological plane. We cannot even easily determine our own ‘actual wills’, still less our former intentions.

(Zeller 1995, 24)

Contributed by Jesse. View changelog.