We should, perhaps, stop talking about “hybrid” texts. “Hybrid” implies things being linked in such a way that their parts are traceable, if not functionally distinct. A hybrid car can run on gas OR electricity. It’s a term that looks backwards, towards its differing origins--a mule is a combination of a horse and a donkey. We know this. And if we didn’t, we could figure it out.
I propose that we speak, instead, of “mongrel” texts. “Mongrel” focuses on the indefinable ancestry of the piece. It forces us to grapple with what is before us, instead of tracing neat lines toward what preceded it.
Finally, the term “hybrid” not only looks towards the past—it sees no future. Hybrids are sterile; the mule cannot reproduce. The mongrel is only the beginning.