Diaries often have printed material at the front (and sometimes back, or between pages). Including recipes, household tips, lunar and solar movements, international dialling codes… this material is dubbed a ‘paratext’.

Paratexts = information

Information = knowledge

Knowledge (can be seen to) = a way of knowing the world

Knowing the world, describing the world (can be viewed as) = a form of control over it.

Diarists write about their lives. The narrative structure diarists give to their lives in the pages of their diaries provides some a sense of structure, even, perhaps, a sense of reality and control in their lives.

Here are some wonderful examples of paratextual material, note that observing and cataloging the moon’s movements is not to control the moon…