Questions asking for general, open-ended, interpretation of a text. Use this tag if you want answers that address all and any aspects of the text: its meaning, atmosphere, style, images, structure, references, context, and so on. Best used on short texts only.

Questions tagged are asking for general, open-ended, interpretation of a text. Answers may cover:

  • the meaning of the text as a whole;
  • the text’s atmosphere and style;
  • glosses of difficult passages;
  • figurative language and rhetorical devices;
  • formal structures like metre, lines, and stanzas;
  • references, allusions and other forms of intertextuality;
  • historical, social, or intellectual context;
  • existing scholarly critiques of the text;
  • application of a theory to the text;
  • anything else about the text that can be backed up by evidence.

Interpretations are not required or expected to be comprehensive: the hope is that multiple answers will approach the text from different perspectives.

This tag is best used on short texts only: ideally, texts that are short enough to quote in full.

history | excerpt history