Within a text, context is the part of the text that surrounds - and affects the meaning or appropriateness of - a particular word or passage. A reader can often determine the meaning of an unfamiliar word by considering its context. The following sentences show how the meaning of the word paper can vary in different contexts.
I start each day with coffee and the morning paper.
Before we moved in, we had someone paper the bathroom walls.
My entire grade rests on this research paper.
Our cat is pedigreed; we have her papers.
For a writer, context consists of the rhetorical situation, including the occasion, the writer's purpose, and the reader for whom the text is being written. For more information, see the Composing Process.