The Oxford Dictionary defines Authorship as: an originator of a plan or idea
The connection between authorship and author is not a consistent one and there are different views on where the power of definition should sit among either end.
The two main schools of thought on this are the Structuralists and the Post Structuralists.
The Modernist period.
The Structuralists aimed to define the underlying processes and how things are organised and how they work by looking deep beneath the surface.
It was the belief of the Structualists that the only person who is allowed to assign meaning was the author, this elevated the author to an unchallengeable force, someone who could not be questioned. Evidence of this can be found in Beatrice Warde's, The Crystal Goblet (1955); "It is sheer magic that I should be able to have a one-sided conversation", the use of 'magic' gives the reader the sense that the author has a power that is otherworldly. There is contradiction in saying 'one-sided conversation' as the audience does not enter into a dialogue with the author but is instead presented the information and is left to consume it. Warde continues by referring to her words as' "broadcasting, writing and printing" all of which are unidirectional forms of communication.
The Postmodernist period.
The Post Structuralists have since looked into how their predecessors (the Structuralists) viewed where definition should be placed and uncovering how the audience interacts with the systems that are in place.
The Structuralists believed that definition of content should be left to the reader and that the author was redundant and represented a homogenised voice that did not represent, and therefore should not speak for, anyone; "writing is the destruction of every voice, of every point of origin."The Death of the Author, Roland Barthes. Barthes questioned why we give the creator the right to definition, "The explanation of a work is always sought in the man or woman who produced it", arguing that in doing this we kill the act of storytelling by giving it a finite response.
Giving the typeface the title 'universal' fits into the Structuralists belief of prescriptive information.
(right) Bicycle Wheel
Duchamp looked at what the minimum requirement was as an artist to be considered the author of a piece of art. Duchamp's work also examines the idea of remix.