chapter  3
14 Pages

The readers of historical romance

The operation of the signifying systems described in Chapter 2 depends on the ways in which the reader mobilizes his or her experience, both of texts and of ‘real life’, to ‘concretize’ (in Iser’s term) and add meaning to the cues provided by the words on the page. The ‘message’ thus not only contributes to but arises from the way in which the readers construct their world-picture, and this is in turn dependent upon their location within society in terms of class, culture, gender, time and place.