Simon Wake

On Pronominalization

“Pronominalization” is a homolinguistic translation of the New King James Version of the first chapter of Genesis, which takes all the noun phrases and replaces them with their corresponding pronouns. This technique comes from a method of testing noun phrases: if a group of words can be replaced by a pronoun then it is a noun phrase.

The technique is meant to illustrate the natural pattern of syntax by simplifying that part of speech into a handful of different words; the repetition of those words mirror the repetition of the noun phrases.

The technique also adds a large amount ambiguity to the text. The text becomes ambiguous to the point where no real meaning can be derived.

The first chapter of Genesis was chosen because it is structurally repetitive but has enough variation so as to create an interesting musicality. Also, it works to reflect my belief in the Bible as a symbolic text which requires a subjective, uncertain interpretation. The reader needs to choose what the pronouns mean for himself because they can mean various things.