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The True Meaning of The Word Marginalia

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chizisqueen
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I've always been stumped by the name Marginalia since it didn't particularly reveal any sort of clue about the goals of Marginalia. I've always thought that maybe it was an arbitrary name until we began to study deconstructionism. A quick google search tells us that Marginalia is derived from the latin word margin meaning well... margin (funny how that worked out). Now lets make the connection to deconstructionism. If we look at every other literary theory we've studied so far, each one tries to bring us closer to the truth or at least contribute another framework for which us to find the "truth". But deconstruction quite literally does nothing and in fact attacks these frameworks. Observing this relationship, we can see that deconstruction could not stand on its own due to its dependence on the idea that dualism found in western literary theory exists (binary oppositions). It could be more or less described that deconstruction lives in the "margins of literary theory".

Nothing really substantial, just a light bulb moment lmao.

Did anyone else figure this out or I am just late to the party? 


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xwing37
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This is the best idea I've heard yet. I have been stumped on where the name marginalia came from for the entire semester and this is the best idea I've heard. I think it's really important to realize that without certain literary theories the idea of deconstructionism wouldn't even exist. And I agree that this is the same for the marginalia, without something to combat and argue against there would be no point for them. But this is a super good idea and I think this could actually be where the meaning of it came from.


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aplitstudent123
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This is a super interesting way to think about where this name came from. I had also wondered the significance of the name Marginalia, and I think you are right in your interpretation. Considering deconstructionism, there are similarities. There must be a book or something already written in order for readers to write in the margins around it. This is similar to how deconstructionism requires other literacy theories in order to exist. And, therefore, the marginalia needs other factions to exist, like the Guardians.


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chizisqueen
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@aplitstudent123 Yup I like that analogy quite a bit in fact! I wonder if there are any other interpretations on the name...


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Steve Chisnell
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And perhaps the opposite is true, as well. The existence of a Canon also obligates/necessitates the existence of its Marginalia. 

How did the Ninja put it in Ch 3? "We are the inevitable result of people like Eliot."


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xwing37
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@aplitstudent123, this is just a small thought but I wonder what would happen if the guardians disappeared. Does the marginalia need them to still be a faction? Or can they still survive based off of common literary theories? This might be going a little too in depth but if the marginalia do depend on factions like the guardians what would happen if the guardians happened to disappear?


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savhoisington
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I think that this is a really great point to go off of. We have all been trying to truly discover the intentions of the marginalia but we haven't gotten far. I really like this because it does connect to the motives of the marginalia that we already were considering. For example, early theories surrounding the word 'margin' were that they did not want to confine to the meaning of the words on the page, and with this thought, that still seems to hold true. I really like that it feels like we are always progressing and building off of things, I hope this continues !


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savhoisington
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@xwing37  I like this question. I think if i were to answer it I would say there would be no marginalia; the marginalia views would still exist but not the faction itself. I think that everyone in the marginalia would still have the marginalia's beliefs, but the only reason to be a faction or group at all is to be connected with people with similar views. This could be to fight another viewpoint or to simply form a community, but without the guardians, there is nothing to stand apart from. everyone would just have the same views and then there would be no need to form a faction in the first place.


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klynnph
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The only thing you mentioned, that I had previously noticed, was the word margin. I had just assumed it was a fun play-on-words, like how if you didn't choose your game name Chiz makes it a pun. I definetly think you've possibly uncovered what Marginalia means though.


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xwing37
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@savhoisington, yeah I agree with this because obviously the idea would still be there but there would be no reason for the marginalia with the guardians gone. I feel like there could still be the guardians without the marginalia though because the guardians don't stand for the same type of views as the marginalia. But I would be super curious to see if one group was somehow eliminated or removed what would happen with the rest of the game and the opposing faction. Thanks for responding!


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aplitstudent123
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I also don't think that the MArginalia could stand alone as a faction. While they are a group of their own beliefs, and big part of their beliefs is going outside and beyond the Guardians. I think that if the Marginalia was gone, the Guardians would be able to continue, just as they are now because their faction stands alone. However, if the Guardians were to discontinue, the MAaginalia would moreso be a group of people with similar mindsets, but they would not have a faction as they do now. 


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Delphine
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@aplitstudent123 I totally agree and was going to say something like this. The Marginalia simply act as an opposer to the Guardians. I honestly am not convinced that they even have their own opinions, rather that they base them on opposing that of the Guardians. However, maybe as we continue through game play we'll discover a deeper purpose that they wish to serve? As of now, I'm not convinced.


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Delphine
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@xwing37 I totally agree. The Marginalia depends on the development of certain ideas in order to create their own, like I stated earlier regarding the Guardians. I think this is true in many groups, as opinions are created in order to act in opposition of others opinions. When people are in disagreement, that is when the development of new groups begins in order to make what they believe is necessary change. 


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Persephone
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Posted by: @schisnell

How did the Ninja put it in Ch 3? "We are the inevitable result of people like Eliot."

This is an idea I hadn't really thought of... We've been discussing how the marginalia cannot exist without the canon, but in reality the reverse is true as well, because without the marginalia we would not have to defend the canon at all, which would make the guardians totally arbitrary. This being said, it would be impossible for us to truly "defeat" the marginalia. Sure, we could band together and kill all the marginalia tomorrow, but the ideas of the marginalia would still inevitably exist, kind of like the opposites we talked about a few chapters back. Where something exists, it's opposite will also exist. 


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abuzz
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I think the word marginalia itself and the fact that we do not know much about them is a metaphor for the margins in a book. While we have pages in literature filled with words (some may even say meaning), there is blank space that creates an emptiness to each page. The space is there... why not fill it with more thoughts? The marginalia appear to be the symbol of this seemingly "empty" space that surrounds the words that the guardians follow.


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