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Showing papers in "Style in 2000"


Journal Article
22 Jun 2000-Style
TL;DR: The study of narrative continues to grow more nuanced, capacious, and extensive as it is applied to an ever greater range of fields and disciplines, appearing more prominently in areas from philosophy and law to studies of performance art and hypertexts.
Abstract: Now, narrative is everywhere. The study of narrative continues to grow more nuanced, capacious, and extensive as it is applied to an ever greater range of fields and disciplines, appearing more prominently in areas from philosophy and law to studies of performance art and hypertexts. Nor is there any end in sight: the most important new movement in religious studies is narrative theology, and there is even a new kind of psychological treatment called "narrative therapy." Cognitive science offers experimental evidence for a claim that only recently was the hyperbolic boast of a practitioner of the nouveau roman: that narrative is the basic vehicle of human knowledge. Or in the words of Mark Turner: "Narrative imagining-story--is the fundamental instrument of thought. [...] It is a literary capacity indispensable to human cognition generally" (4-5). In literary, cultural, and performance studies, narrative theory continues to expand, whether in the burgeoning field of life writing or in the analysis of drama or film. It is no exaggeration to say that the last ten years have seen a renaissance in narrative theory and analysis. Feminism, arguably the most significant intellectual force of the second half of the twentieth century, has (as should be expected) utterly and fruitfully transformed narrative theory and analysis in many ways. Virtually every component of or agent in the narrative transaction has been subjected to sustained examination, including space, closure, character, narration, reader response, linearity and narrative sequence, and even the phenomenon of narrative itself. Some of these reconceptualizations, as Honor Wallace's article in this issue demonstrates, continue to be debated and refined. Broader-based gender criticism and queer studies steadily followed the rise of feminism, some results of which are likewise evident in this issue. Though rather less work has appeared from other marginalized or "minority" perspectives so far, these are certainly areas that can be expected to provide significant contributions in the near future. Already, several important studies are available, including work on narrative and race, and in postcolonial studies much attention has been devoted to the construction of imperial and national narratives. Other movements in critical theory from Lacanian analysis to "nomadology" to new historicism have been readily applied to narrative study and have often produced impressive results. Elsewhere in the field, a new kind of interdisciplinarity is quietly emerging, as developments in artificial-intelligence theory, hypertext studies, the concept of "possible worlds" in analytical philosophy, and advances in cognitive science are applied to narrative theory. Narrative thus seems to be a kind of vortex around which other discourses orbit in ever closer proximity. Another interesting development is represented by the work of a number of younger scholars who retain the analytical rigor of traditional or "classical" approaches while moving far beyond the relatively limited theoretical parameters of structuralism to address new questions posed by postmodern texts and positionalities. These theorists (including Ruth Ronen, Tamar Yacobi, Brian McHale, Monika Fludernik, Emma Kafalenos, and Patrick O'Neill) have produced a number of groundbreaking studies that are necessitating a radical rethinking of concepts that hitherto have been foundational to narrative theory: the distinction between fabula and syuzhet, the nature of narrative time, the concept of plot, the notion of voice, and the concept of "the" reader. They have applied analytical methods to irreverent postmodern narrative practices and formulated a number of original positions. Though I suspect that some will reject the name (and perhaps the company) I am constructing for them, I will nevertheless refer to these works as gesturing toward a "Postmodern Narratology." What is Narrative? Currently, four basic approaches to the definition of narrative are in use; we may designate these as temporal, causal, minimal, and transactional. …

97 citations


Journal Article
22 Jun 2000-Style
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors discuss some of the theoretical implications of a text-type approach to the definition of narrative and propose a triad based on the model of text linguistics, which they modelled on textlinguistic work found in Longacre's The Grammar of Discourse.
Abstract: In Coming to Terms (1990), Seymour Chatman initiated an enquiry into the delimitation of the narrative text type as against the text types of argument and description. This revolutionary step was a major landmark for literary scholars; linguists, by contrast, had been battling with the same problems for two decades, trying to distinguish between, on the one hand, the larger text types that are constitutive of our understanding of narrative versus expository or exhortative discourse (in oral or written formats), and, on the other hand, the surface textual sequences of report, dialogue, argument, descriptipn, and so on. In narrative studies, too, there arose some recognition that a narrative text does not exclusively consist in narrative sentences but includes a large number of supposedly nonnarrative items (the speech and thought representation of the characters, for instance) as well as metanarrative features (e.g., the narrator's evaluation, reader address) and some strictly speaking nonnarrative elements, s uch as description, that are, however, constitutive of how most narratives handle the setting. All of these supposedly nonnarrative elements are basic ingredients of any narrative surface structure. From the classic definition of narrative as a "mixed" genre (combining mimesis and diegesis) to Helmut Bonheim's The Narrative Modes (1982), which analyses narrative texts as sequences of report, speech, description, and comment, narratologists and literary scholars have been keenly aware of the fact that novels or short stories or even historical works are not uniformly "narrative." Not every sentence in a narrative text, that is, qualifies as "narrative" by the standards of narratological narrativity. It was Chatman's unique achievement to focus on this impurity of the narrative surface structure with renewed critical attention and to tackle the problem in a manner anticipated by text linguistics. I would like to return to the problem of narrative's variegated textual surface structure, picking up where I left this issue of generic classification and text types in Towards a 'Natural' Narratology (1996). In a very brief section of chapter 8 of that book (section 8.4, esp. 356-58), I had proposed a revision and extension of Chatman's triad which I modelled on textlinguistic work found in Longacre's The Grammar of Discourse. I would now like to expand this proposal even further, linking it more comprehensively with the structure of natural narratology. In particular, I wish to discuss some of the theoretical implications of a text-type approach to the definition of narrative. I will start by introducing a few models from text linguistics, especially the model of Virtanen and Warvik with which I was not familiar when writing Towards a 'Natural' Narratology. 1. Text Types Linguists have realized for some time that textual surface structures display a wide spectrum of forms that vary with the respective type of discourse. Since text linguistics, unlike literary scholarship, does not focus primarily on literary or even on written texts, linguists have had to develop a great number of concepts to account for variety in language use (register e.g.) or for the use of language in specific situations (e.g. telephone conversations; natural narrative; doctor-patient discourse; instruction manuals; cookbooks, etc.). The term "text type" in text linguistics refers to a number of quite distinct phenomena on a variety of different levels. In "Text-Type as a Linguistic Unit," for instance, Esser defines text type as "language variation according to use as opposed to variation according to user" (142). [1] He distinguishes between extensional definitions (text types as genres); definitions based on external criteria of production; on structurally defined schemata or superstructures (cf. van Dijk); and definitions deriving from "abstracted corpus norms" established by means of statistical analysis (e.g., in the work of Biber). …

63 citations


Journal Article
01 Jul 2000-Style
TL;DR: New historicism and cultural materialism as discussed by the authors have been studied extensively in the last few decades, with a focus on the ways in which power contains any potential subversion, and the way in which defiance, subversion and dissidence can be represented, represented and performed.
Abstract: John Brannigan. New Historicism and Cultural Materialism. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1998. ix + 249 pp. $55.00 cloth; $19.95 paper. A central theme of John Brannigan's usefully compact critical survey of new historicism and cultural materialism involves the important contributions these critical schools have made to ongoing discussions of the cultural circulation of power. Brannigan makes a convincing case that between 1980 and 1986 the "new historicism" of such American critics as Stephen Greenblatt, Louis Montrose, Stephen Orgel, and D. A. Miller emerged as a fairly consolidated tradition, possessed of its own well-defined set of concerns and problematics, and even its own house journal, Representations. While highlighting the methodological distinctions among various practitioners, Brannigan nonetheless approvingly cites H. Aram Veeser's general characterization of new historicist tenets: "every expressive act" (including contemporary criticism) "is embedded in a network of material practices" and thus "literary and non-literary 'texts' circulate inseparably" (71). (Brannigan dismisses Greenblatt's preference for the term "cultural poetics" as mere posturing, although he acknowledges that the label may be more precise.) The term "cultural materialism" refers to the work of British critics including Jonathan Dollimore, Alan Sinfield, and Catherine Belsey, who share many of the concerns of their Yankee counterparts, but who work by "analysing the material existence of ideology, concentrated in the study of literary texts" (12). Both schools emerged during the 1980s; both resist humanist idealism and formalist methodology and reject facile distinctions between history and representation; and both initially targeted the mobilization of ideological self-regulation and the noncoercive production of consent during the Renaissance. Designed in large part as a pedagogical introduction for students of literary theory, New Historicism and Cultural Materialism thoroughly and effectively summarizes the distinctive features of each school, outlines their institutional and publication histories, and glosses both the founding theorists (Michael Foucault and Clifford Geertz for the new historicists, Raymond Williams for the cultural materialists) as well as the key critical texts (Brannigan appends a useful annotated bibliography of important essays and books). For Brannigan, the primary difference between the two schools hinges on the problem of "containment": New historicists typically examine the functions and representations of power, and focus on the ways in which power contains any potential subversion. Cultural materialists, to the contrary, look for ways in which defiance, subversion, dissidence, resistance, all forms of political opposition, are articulated, represented and performed. (108) Whatever the emphasis, new historicism and cultural materialism have not only revitalized Renaissance studies (and to some extent Victorian and American literary and cultural studies), but many of the assumptions Brannigan attributes to these schools have become almost commonsensical in journals and classrooms. Many of us now "tend to read literary texts as material products of specific historical conditions" and assume that "texts of all kinds are the vehicles of politics insofar as texts mediate the fabric of social, political and cultural formations" (3). Yet such formulae raise as many questions as they put to rest, and new historicism in particular has generated a considerable amount of skeptical response. Brannigan cites these criticisms in passing, but his elaborations of many of the arguments are underdeveloped. A primary lament is the peculiarly disabling model of power developed by Greenblatt and his camp followers, a model according to which "there is no effective space of resistance" (8). As Brannigan notes, for example, Carolyn Porter has charged that the new historicist model of generalized power works to reduce heterogeneous historical events, texts, and performances to predictable operations of a presumably homogenous and universal power. …

40 citations


Journal Article
01 Oct 2000-Style
TL;DR: The second edition of Richter's Falling into Theory: Conflicting Views of Teaching Literature responds to the disciplinary, institutional, and cultural issues under debate in the humanities since the publication of the first edition in 1994 as mentioned in this paper.
Abstract: David H. Richter, ed. Falling into Theory: Conflicting Views on Reading Literature. 2n ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2000. xviii + 414 pp. $16.50 paper. The second edition of David Richter's Falling into Theory: Conflicting Views of Teaching Literature responds to the disciplinary, institutional, and cultural issues under debate in the humanities since the publication of the first edition in 1994. These lively conflicts over the theory and practice of reading in departments of English, American, and cultural studies have proved enormously influential in expanding the borders and subject matters of these disciplines. Falling into Theory organizes these conflicts over reading around three general questions: Why do we read? What do we read? How do we read? These questions are designed to invite students to shape an understanding of their own reading experiences within the broader theoretical contexts in which such questions are posed. Falling into Theory offers readers thirty-eight selections-twenty-two new essays in addition to sixteen from the first edition. Each of the three parts of the book provides a representative set of essays on the most formative and controversial issues debated by literary critics and theorists during the period from 1970 to 1998. There are five early selections (Freire, 1970; Deluze and Guattari 1975; Achebe, Barthes, [both 1977]; and Gilbert and Gubar, 1979), fifteen selections from influential theorists writing in the 1980s, and eighteen in the 1990s. Twenty-one of the selections are complete essays or book chapters, and the remainder are self-contained excerpts from longer works. Each selection has a concise and informative introduction to the author, with annotations and helpful notes suggesting opportunities for further reading. The second edition also includes an appendix, "Falling into Theory Online," that will prove useful for students interested in the ongoing conversation about literature and reading on the Web. Rather than provide a chronological sequence of texts, Richter clusters selections by topic to underscore the heuristic value of studying the conflicting views on reading literature. Part One, "Why Do We Read?: The University, the Humanities, and the Province of Literature," introduces students to the vibrant conversation about the nature and value of the humanities, and in particular the problem of disciplinarity: it opens with Helen Vendler's 1980 inaugural address to the members of the Modern Language Association, "What We Have Loved, Others Will Love," and concludes with an excerpt from Robert Scholes's 1998 book The Rise and Fall of English, entitled "A Fortunate Fall?" Part One raises central questions for humanities students, most importantly by drawing connections between the experience of reading and the study of reading protocols in the classroom. Why we read, and why we study literature, are questions that should inform every decision we make as teachers and every task we set for our students. Such reflections on the personal and social motivations for reading will ideally lead students to difficult questions about the contemporary value of the humanities and literature. Part Two, "What We Read: The Literary Canon and the Curriculum after the Culture Wars," moves away from the political and aesthetic debates of the culture wars featured in the first edition toward the intellectual battles fought in their wake-over the syllabus, the curriculum, and the canon. In Part Two there are new essays by Janice Radway, Alan Purves, John Guillory, and Harold Bloom. However the second edition quietly displaces the generative provocations of Charles Altieri and Denis Donoghue to brief mention in the introduction. One wonders, too, why this section does not include other influential voices from this period on the politics of the curriculum, such as Frank Lentricchia and Walter Benn Michaels. And Part Three, "How We Read: Interpretive Communities and Literary Meaning" is substantially expanded in the second edition to account for the current debates over authorial intent, identity politics, and the ethics and politics of reading as well. …

20 citations


Journal Article
22 Jun 2000-Style
TL;DR: The following list of significant titles in narrative theory is intended to cover work published during the last dozen years or so: as mentioned in this paper The items below can be further divided by approach or emphasis into the following groups: 1) Structuralist and Linguistic Approaches: Bal, Bonheim, Chatman, Cohn, Coste, Dallenbach, Fleischman, Genette, Herman, de Jong, Margolin, Nelles, Nelson, Nunning, Riffaterre, Rimmon-Kenan, Shen, Sternberg, Toker, Wolf
Abstract: The following list of significant titles in narrative theory is intended to cover work published during the last dozen years or so. Omissions, though inevitable, are regretted. The items below can be further divided by approach or emphasis into the following groups: 1) Structuralist and Linguistic Approaches: Bal, Bonheim, Chatman, Cohn, Coste, Dallenbach, Fleischman, Fludernik, Genette, Herman, de Jong, Margolin, Nelles, Nelson, Nunning, Riffaterre, Rimmon-Kenan, Shen, Sternberg, Toker, Wolf 2) Rhetorical, Bakhtinian, and Phenomenological Accounts: Aczel, Bauer, Boardman, Calinescu, Cave, Hale, Messent, Morson, Phelan, Ricoeur 3) New Interdisciplinary Approaches: Artificial Intelligence: Cook, Hayles, Ryan Possible Worlds Theory: G. Currie, Do1eze1, Ronen, Ryan Cognitive Science: Herman, Jahn, Spolsky, Turner Hypertext Studies: Hayles 4) Postmodern Narratology: Brooke-Rose, Fludernik, Heise, Kafalenos, McHale, Moraru, O'Neill, Richardson, Ronen, Yacobi 5) Ideological Approaches: Feminism and Gender Theory: Barwell, Bauer, Boone, Booth, Case, Cave, Casey, Doherty, Felski, Frye, Friedman, Henke, Hirsch, Hite, Homans, Lanser, Mezei, Robinson, Singley and Sweeney, Walker, Winnett. Gay, Lesbian and Queer Theory: Bersani, Boone, Farwell, Lanser 1995, Roof Race and Ethnicity: Beavers, Doyle, Duncan, Gates, Jablon, Stepto, Warhol 1995 Marxism, Historical Approaches, and New Historicism: Armstrong and Tennenhouse, Bender, Casey, Chambers, Ginsburg, D. A. Miller, Quint Postcolonial: Bhabha, Fletcher, Spurr 6) Psychological Approaches: Bronfen, Hirsch, Henke, Kahane, Kofman, Mellard, Mellard and Mortimer, Tilley, van Boheemen 7) Poststructuralist Approaches: Amman, Clayton, Cornis-Pope, M. Curnie, Fried, Gelley, Gibson, Mellard, J. H. Miller, Rabinowitz, Roof, van Boheemen, J. Williams 8) Popular Culture: Beissinger et al; Smith and Watson; Warhol 2001 9) Asian Poetics: Beissinger et al; Miner, Mori 10) Important Anthologies: Fehn et al; Grunzweig and Solbach; Herman 1999; Mihailescu and Hamarneh; Phelan 1989a, 1994 Journal special issues: Poetics Today 11.1 and 11.4 (1990); Style 22.1 (1988) and 26.3 (1992); Studies in the Literary Imagination 25.1 (1992); Narrative 9.2 (2001) forthcoming; New Literary History 32.2 (2001) forthcoming. Works Aczel, Richard. "Hearing Voices in Narrative Texts." New Literary History 29 (1998): 467-500. Amiran, Eyal. "Against Narratology: Postmodern Narrative Returns." SubStance 81 (1996): 90-109. Armstrong, Nancy and Leonard Tennenhouse. "History, Poststructuralism, and the Question of Narrative." Narrative 1 (1993): 45-58. Bal, Mieke. Narratology: Introduction to the Theory of Narrative. 2nd ed. Toronto: U of Toronto P, 1997. Barwell, Ismay. "Feminine Perspectives and Narrative Points of View." Aesthetics in Feminist Perspectives. Eds. Hilda Hein and Carolyn Korsmeyer. Bloomington: Indiana UP, 1993. 93-104 Bauer, Dale. Feminist Dialogics: A Theory of Failed Community. Albany: State U of New York P, 1988. Beavers, Herman. Wrestling the Angels into Song: The Fictions of Ernest J. Gaines and James Alan McPherson. Philadelphia: U of Pennsylvania P, 1995. ___. ed. "Multiculturalism and Narrative." Special issue. Narrative 7.2 (1999). Beissinger, Margaret, Jane Tylus, and Susanne Wofford, eds. Epic Traditions in the Contemporary World: The Poetics of Community. Berkeley: U of California P, 1999. Bender, John. Imagining the Penitentiary. Fiction and the Architecture of Mind in Eighteenth-Century England. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 1987. ___. "Impersonal Violence: The Penetrating Gaze and the Field of Narration in Caleb Williams." Vision and Textuality. Ed. Stephen Melville and Bill Readings. Durham, NC: Duke UP, 1995. …

13 citations


Journal Article
22 Jun 2000-Style
TL;DR: The human body has rarely been an explicit part of these modernist aesthetics as mentioned in this paper, and this neglect results from narratology's traditional focus on what Gerald Prince has called questions of how over questions of what.
Abstract: Despite its signal importance to so many schools of contemporary criticism, the human body has largely failed to garner a significant place in narratology. This neglect results from narratology's traditional focus on what Gerald Prince has called questions of "how" over questions of "what." An overview like Mieke Bal's influential Narratology breaks narratology down into the study of "elements" and "aspects." The former are the actual events, actors, and places that make up the story, and the latter are the ways that the text manipulates the presentation of those elements. A narrative cannot exist if it lacks both elements and aspects, but, as Prince notes, narratology has traditionally been interested in the latter: in the most common type of narrative criticism "the narratologist pays little or no attention to the story as such, the narrated, the what that is represented, and concentrates instead on the discourse, the narrating, the way in which the 'what' is represented" (75). One reason for this focus on the manipulation of story elements rather than on the elements themselves is narratology's emphasis, growing out of modern fiction, on consciousness and perception. Our most flexible and enduring narrative concepts--"stream of consciousness," "point of view," and "free indirect discourse"--all describe the authorial attempt to get down on paper a character's way of thinking. The human body has rarely been an explicit part of these modernist aesthetics. Another reason that narratology has focused on story aspects rather than elements is that it is far less clear how we are to study such elements. While students at the undergraduate level can usually grasp with relatively little difficulty the idea that a narrative is a series of choices made by an author to achieve a certain effect and meaning, we have considerably more difficulty explaining how the objects represented shape the narratives that represent them. The human body, consequently, has rarely been studied as a narratological object. I am not, of course, suggesting that critics have not discussed the human body in individual narratives, hut rather that such discussions rarely are used as an occasion to raise fundamentally narratological issues. The 1985 issue of Poetics Today on the female body edited by Susan Suleiman is typical of the way that narratology has failed to integrate the body into its core interests. This volume certainly talks a great deal about narrative and about issues arising from the body, but the two rarely come together to produce what we could call a corporeal narratology. Suleiman's own essay on alternatives to traditional ways of representing the female body is a case in point. Suleiman first discusses the reaction to recently popular female erotic texts, like Erica Jong's Fear of Flying and Rita Mae Brown's Rubyfruit Jungle, and concludes, "If the popularity of these books is, on the one hand, a positive sign, suggesting that the American public is ready to admit some real changes in what is considered an accept able story or an acceptable use of language by women, it may also be a sign that neither book is felt to imply a genuine threat to existing ways of seeing and being between the sexes" (47). Suleiman then goes on to consider the alternatives to traditional representations of gender, concluding with Angela Carter's The Passion of New Eve, in which "it is impossible to say who is woman and who is man, where one sex or one self begins and the other ends" (63). Despite her interest in how narrative represents gender, Suleiman does not ask the question that seems to me the central one of a corporeal narratology: how do certain ways of thinking about the body shape the plot, characterization, setting, and other aspects of narrative? [1] In reviewing the recent history of narratology, Mieke Bal cites this Poetics Today volume as an instance of how recent criticism has drifted away from core narratological issues: "although this volume is definitely not devoid of narratological concerns, these certainly do not predomi nate" ("The Point" 728). …

11 citations


Journal Article
22 Mar 2000-Style
TL;DR: The Great Gatsby as discussed by the authors is a novel famous for the lyrical splendor created by its narrator's voice, and it can be seen as a kind of "poetic" prose.
Abstract: I decided to play football, to smoke, to go to college, to do all sorts of irrelevant things that had nothing to do with the real business of life, which, of course, was the proper mixture of description and dialogue in the short story. F. Scott Fitzgerald, "Who's Who--and Why" Some talk has an obvious meaning and nothing more, he said, and some, often unbeknownst to the talker, has at least one other meaning and sometimes several other meanings lurking around inside its obvious meaning. [...] Everything depended, he said, on how talk was interpreted, and not everybody was able to interpret it. Joseph Mitchell, "Joe Gould's Secret" To the degree that readers of the novel have listened for the sound of the narrator's voice, they have turned a deaf ear to all those other kinds of talk that makes novels novels. This widespread bias makes a certain kind of historical sense: developed through the close reading of poetry, the methods of formalist criticism have always worked best on texts distinguished by a verbal purity typically associated with the traditional lyric. Yet, by treating novels like poems in order to read them more closely, most formalist criticism has slighted the Novel's distinctively messy, mongrel quality, its capacity to represent what Bakhtin calls "the real business of life" by "employing on the plane of a single work discourses of various types, with all their expressive capacities intact" (200). [1] The impact of this selective attention becomes clear when one considers how rarely critics choose to explicate an excerpt from a novel that includes characters speaking to one another. Close readings almost always analyze passages of narration, not of dialogue. As David Lodge points out, "When [...] we take what is deemed to be a representative passage (of a novel...], we invariably choose a passage of narrative description that is either authorial, or focalized through a character with whom the implied author is in sympathy" (76). But novels, as Lodge argues, are full of what he said and she said, as well as a range of other discourses that intermingle with the speech of the characters--and a critical method that would do justice to novels should be able to account for the ways in which they are "full of other people's words" (After Bakhtin 200). In illustrating such an approach, this essay will focus on The Great Gatsby, a novel famous for the lyrical splendor created by its narrator's voice. In the memory of many of its readers, Gatsby exists as a series of magnificent descriptions: a green light glimmering across the bay, the eyes of Dr. T.J. Eckleburg hovering over a valley of ashes, the colors of silk shirts falling. Few readers remember what Daisy says or the way Myrtle talks. Gats by, then, would seem to be the kind of novel that would lose very little from being treated as "poetic" prose. Yet, to the same degree that we concentrate on the sound of Nick's transcendent narration--"a tuning fork [...] struck upon a star"--we have trouble hearing the almost-as-thrilling inflections of Daisy's banter, the no-nonsense tone of Tom's manner of speaking, and the flatly prosaic note sounded by the smallest of Myrtle's small talk (117). In his Notebooks, Fitzgerald offers us an invitation to reconsider our critical method, to broaden our sense of how much the novel can hold: "There never was a good biography of a good novelist," he writes. "There couldn't be. He is too many people if he's any good" (1037). [2] By insisting that there could not be a unitary author behind a good novel, Fitzgerald suggests that there could not be a single, stable narrative voice within it. In so doing, Fitzgerald points us toward a kind of reading that could better comprehend the novel's range of voices. This sense of the "many people" that good novelists are made of seems related to Fitzgerald's fascination with dialogue, the way that characters (and people) speak to each other. …

10 citations


Journal Article
22 Jun 2000-Style
TL;DR: In this paper, Weldon's The Life and Loves of a She-Devil (1983) is read as a reworking of the Faust legend, and it is argued that the female principle should be passive, rather than active.
Abstract: When, at the beginning of Fay Weldon's The Life and Loves of a She-Devil (1983), Ruth decides she can no longer endure her husband's infidelity and emotional abuse, she articulates her desires and forms a plan of action to fulfill them. "I want revenge," she states, "I want power. I want money. I want to be loved and not love in return" (43). In moving from passive acquiescence to active desire, Ruth breaks several rules. First, and most obviously, she breaks the rules of feminine behavior, what she herself describes as "The Litany of the Good Housewife." Secondly, she alters a fundamental tenet of traditional narrative: that the female principle be passive, rather than active. And, finally, her behavior breaks with feminist theories of narrative that see in Ruth's aggressive, even destructive activity a repetition of patriarchal norms as they are traditionally articulated by narrative. Stories such as Ruth's, in which the female protagonist emulates masculine narrative tropes, pose serious problems for femi nist narrative theories. In this article, I will trace such theories, exploring their rationale but arguing that they prescribe a narrative form that precludes female desire and action. The story of Weldon's she-devil has been read as a reworking of the Faust legend, [1] and, indeed, that narrative, particularly in Goethe's Romantic version, provides a rich contrast between how masculine desire and activity relate to narrative and how Ruth's claim to desire and activity initiate narrative. [2] Faust, like Ruth, lays claim to desire and in fact predicates his life narrative on the ability to desire endlessly. As Peter Brooks points out, Freud refers to Faust in Beyond the Pleasure Principle as "pre-eminently the representation of man's unquenchable striving" (54). According to Brooks's theories of narrative, this Faustian striving creates narrative; as he explains, "desire is always there at the start of narrative, often in a state of initial arousal, often having reached a state of intensity such that movement must be created, action undertaken, change begun" (38). Faust's articulation of his desires and of his will to desire translates into narrative action, the striving forward according to a linear, teleological movement. If Ruth shares with Faust this intensity of, and commitment to, desire, should her story not take on the same qualities--an active striving towards a goal? Unfortunately for Ruth the association of desire and action with masculinity (in the linear model Brooks describes) means that narrative movement is suspect--doubly so, insofar as it defies both conventional assumptions of how female protagonists behave and certain feminist assumptions of how women's stories should be structured. According to such assumptions, conventional narratives such as the Faust legend, and indeed, narrative itself, are incapable of expressing feminine desire and thus must be rejected in favor of other forms, most specifically, the lyric. In contrast to the masculine, linear narrative desire Brooks describes as "the arousal that creates the narratable as a condition of tumescence, appetency, ambition, quest, and gives narrative a forward-looking intention" (103), feminist theory posits a lyric timelessness connected to women's bodies and feminine desire. For example, Julia Kristeva suggests that "there are cycles, gestation, the eternal recurrence of a biological rhythm which conforms to that of nature and imposes a temporality whose stereotyping may shock, but whose regularity and unison with what is experienced as extra-subjective time, cosmic time, occasion vertiginous vision and unnameable jouissance" (191). The derivation of lyric desire from the pre-Oedipal, that is, from before the subject's entry into the linear time of history and narrative further emphasizes lyric "timelessness." Thus, as Susan Stanford Friedman explains, lyric discourse replicates the desire for the imagined early mother-child bond while narrative discourse reflects the later story dominated by the father. …

9 citations


Journal Article
22 Jun 2000-Style
TL;DR: This article argued that the difference between narrative and literature can best be described as a set of toggle switches, which are either on or off, but the platform keeps running, while other operations can be performed on top of it.
Abstract: It often seems that the various disciplines are like city-states, each with excellent plumbing, excellent standards governing the width of the pipes, the depth of the threads, the valves, the fixtures, the nuts and the bolts, so that internally each system works very well. But when you want to make connections at the borders, things start to break down. Nowhere is this clearer than in the effort to adapt terms and concepts (even the term "concept" poses problems of translation [1]). Complicating matters is the fact that the further a discipline is from physics, the likelier it is to tolerate a plurality of usage for any single term. Within literary study (a field very far from physics) there is, for example, no general agreement regarding terms like "narrative," "plot," "literature," "discourse," "representation." This lack is not necessarily a fault, but a sign of how the complexity of literary study requires a certain degree of play at this level of study. Efforts to establish a Prussian order in the term inology of literary study can do more harm than good. Nonetheless, terms bring with them ways of thinking, and it is the impacted nature of these ways of thinking that leads to infra-structural breakdowns at our disciplinary borders. It is possible that we will eventually achieve some kind of protocol for pan-disciplinary exchange that will allow us to connect with each other meaningfully. But I would like to suggest also, in this essay, that sometimes the shock of leaping borders and suddenly seeing your old familiar terms from a new disciplinary perspective can be salutary precisely because the differences of field are so great. This essay focuses on two terms, "narrative" and "literature," that have enjoyed a long and happy coexistence in humanist discourse. My argument is that, when looked at in terms of the cognitive operations they involve, these terms appear to be separated by a deep conceptual difference. Probing this difference may give some indication of where we might start to work in trying to match literary and cognitive understandings. At the same time, it shows how simply by trying to cross disciplinary borders we can give vigorous new life to old terms. Put briefly, the conceptual difference between narrative and literature, when understood as cognitive operations, is a kind of puzzle that goes like this: where narrative can best be described as a platform, literature can best be described as a set of toggle switches. To older generations, this may look like a mixed metaphor, but in the age of the computer, it works. A platform is something that persists in time, supporting a host of other operations that are carried o ut on top of it. A politician can stand on a platform and do many things (for example, give speeches) that may have little to do with the platform he or she stands on. In computers, a platform doesn't stand, it runs, but the deep concept is the same. While the platform is running, other operations can be performed on top of it. Many of these operations are controlled by toggle switches. They are either on or off, but the platform keeps running. I. Narrative As terms in the humanistic disciplines, "narrative" is more secure than "literature." We are usually pretty sure that we know it when we see it. And this goes for most of us, humanists and non-humanists alike. As soon as he came up, he leaped from his own horse, and caught hold of hers by the bridle. The unruly beast presently reared himself on end on his hind legs, and threw his lovely burden from his back, and Jones caught her in his arms. (Fielding 195) This is, in all its parts, "the telling of an event" (the commonest definition of narrative). It is discourse that lets us see that something happened. And if most of us are pretty clear about obvious examples of narrative like this, many (though perhaps not most) of us are also pretty clear about what is not narrative: The critic, rightly considered, is no more than the clerk, whose office it is to transcribe the rules and laws laid down by those great judges whose vast strength of genius hath placed them in the light of legislators, in the several sciences over which they presided. …

9 citations


Journal Article
22 Sep 2000-Style
TL;DR: For instance, the authors analyzed the most complete and strongest epiphanies in the poetic work of Elizabeth Bishop and applied a method worked out in my Patterns of Epiphany (1997) and further tested in recent papers on Philip Larkin (1999) and J. D. Salinger (2000).
Abstract: "The concept of literary epiphany has received surprisingly little theoretical attention in recent years," writes Ashton Nichols. "Privileged moments of secular revelation have become a literary commonplace in poems and prose narratives, but only a handful of scholars have considered the wider implications of the technique derived from William Wordsworth's 'spots of time' and first called 'epiphany' by James Joyce" (Nichols 467; the very recent collection of essays edited by Tigges may be a harbinger of welcome change in this regard). This oversight may be an aftereffect of New Criticism, whose stress on "organic unity" made it seem heretical for the critic to study an epiphany apart from its context in the tightly unified work one hoped to find. The mysterious or nonrational effect produced by epiphanies may also have discouraged theorists from thinking of a given writer's epiphanic moments as a class of constructed objects amenable to systematic study. But if we have a multifarious depth psychology to help u s grasp the puzzling logic of dream constructions, we need a complementary epiphanology to reveal the less-than-obvious logic of epiphany patterns. Each epiphany maker establishes a uniquely individual recurrent pattern that correlates with a personal configuration of psychological concerns, fears, and desires. In creating epiphanies, as the example of Elizabeth Bishop testifies, one becomes most intensely who one is. No attempt has yet been made to analyze the distinctive pattern of Bishop's powerful verse epiphanies. In two brief, overlapping essays, Sybil Estess finds certain of Bishop's lyrics epiphanic because they are "meditative," show rich "powers of association," offer descriptions in "minute detail," and are "tentative" while expressing the "spirit of wonder" ("Shelters" 53, 55, 59; "Toward the Interior" uses similar phrasing). [1] But these remarks barely begin to distinguish Bishop's epiphanies from her lyric utterances generally, much less to define what makes her epiphanies different from those of other poets. In the following analysis of the most complete and strongest epiphanies in the poetic work of Elizabeth Bishop, I will apply a method worked out in my Patterns of Epiphany (1997) and further tested in recent papers on Philip Larkin (1999) and J. D. Salinger (2000). Here, as in those studies, I begin by using three criteria to define a literary epiphany. (1) It is a moment that affects us as exceptionall y intense in feeling. (2) It is expansive in meaning, appearing to signify more than such a brief experience would have any right to mean. (3) And it is mysterious in effect because its intensity and expansiveness are unaccountable by any rational explanation in the writer's text. [2] My technique for study of epiphany borrows from French phenomenologist Gaston Bachelard a threefold focus on (1) elements, namely earth, water, air, fire--along with elementally related imagery such as rainbows; (2) motions--vertical or horizontal, rapid or gentle, sudden or gradual; and (3) shapes--often geometric, such as circles or spheres. My methodology differs from the techniques of close analysis used by New Critics and offers advantages for psychological analysis as well. New Critical study of imagery tended to ignore such components of the epiphanies because these components are semi-abstract, not obviously picturelike. In my method, the motion pattern is sought regardless of what moves, the geometric shape identified independently of what fills it, the element studied whatever the variety of its endless shapes or chaotic defiances of form. The semiabstract nature of these components of epiphanies may actually take us deeper than New Critical analysis into structures of an individual's mental functi oning. At the same time, however, the components of the patterns of epiphany that I study are far less generalized than, say, the images of cyclicity (lunar, diurnal, seasonal) systematized by Northrop Frye (158-62). …

7 citations



Journal Article
01 Oct 2000-Style
TL;DR: Christine van Boheemen-Saaf as mentioned in this paper studied the trauma of history visited upon the Irish by Great Britain's impulse to colonize others in the 19th and 20th centuries.
Abstract: Christine van Boheemen-Saaf Joyce, Derrida, Lacan, and the Trauma of History: Reading, Narrative, and Postcolonialism Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999 x + 227 pp $5995 cloth As Joyce's intention to keep scholars baffled for centuries becomes ever more apparent in the polyphony of readings his works inspire, most academics have abandoned their (masculinist) hopes of mastering Joyce's texts in favor of creative and varied engagements with them No exception to this rule, Christine van Boheemen-Saaf's fine study of Joyce as a postmodern and (post)colonial writer and subject calls on readers to witness the trauma of history visited upon the Irish by Great Britain's impulse to colonize others Such an impulse complicates the formation of an individual as well as a collective Irish identity, especially since that identity or set of identities is constituted in a language quite different from Gaelic Irish citizens, then, have to account for the loss of a "natural" language at the same time that they forge identities within an oppressive language, political system, and historical reality Ideal readers of Joyce, Van Boheemen-Saaf suggests, do well to empathetically "witness" the inexpressible traumas of colonialism that are discursively encrypted in his texts At one point in her study, Van Boheemen-Saaf defines a diary as "words written by the self to the self in order not to forget the self ' (67) The criticism that hopes to tame Joyce's texts often reads like so many diaries that monumentalize certain readings, insights, or ego-bolstering "solutions" to the textual riddles Joyce purportedly poses Van Boheemen-Saaf, on the other hand, offers readers a refreshing approach to Joyce at the same time that she avoids writing a self-serving diary Outlining one of the central claims of her work, Van Boheemen-Saaf writes, "I want to reclaim the importance of literature as a socially necessary source of knowledge, especially in its affective demand to witness literature's occasion" (10) Throughout her five-chapter study, and in detailed discussions of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, the "Cyclops" and "Penelope" episodes of Ulysses, and Finnegans Wake, Van Boheemen-Saaf convincingly casts the reader in the position of witness Joyce's text, she claims, "was designed as a location where the anxiety of postcolonial existence could find embodied existence, and as an anamorphic mirror which returns to the reader the experience of traumatic insufficiency characteristic of colonial experience" (191) The "trauma of Irishness" (3) involves a crisis of identity in language and a crisis of understanding as obtained within language Joyce himself mocked epistemology, referring to it in Finnegans Wake as "Epistlemadethemology for deep dorfy doubtlings" (37417-18) As "deep dorfy doubtlings," we cannot help but to see our modes of knowing as constructed and as insufficient when confronted with Joycean texts that simultaneously mock our "dorfiness" and encourage our epistemological and ontological doubt * This study is at its strongest when Van Boheemen-Saaf reads Joyce alongside Jacques Lacan and Jacques Derrida, illuminating the subaltern subjectivity that challenges both binarity and the void at the "origin" of colonial identity As an example, the chapter titled "Representation in a Postcolonial Symbolic" takes as its subject Stephen Dedalus's relationship to language Because Stephen is a subaltern subject, "the English language does not provide him with a stable point of authority, a unified mirror image, an unshakeable concept of origin which can ground identity in his language" (49) Although the English language fails in many ways to anchor Stephen's identity, I wonder if any language can in fact "anchor" any subject's identity Lacan's system argues for the radical contingency of identity in all symbolic systems In his Ecrits Lacan argues that "the unconscious is structured in the most radical way like a language" (234) …

Journal Article
22 Jun 2000-Style
TL;DR: The authors argued that today's literature is not merely reflexive but metalinguistic, in the technical sense of that term, which is not, in fact, a defensible c laim.
Abstract: Narratology was born along with the rise of self-reflexivity in modernist and postmodernist fiction. Thus, when he sought to justify the application of Saussurean language theory to narrative discourse in his "Introduction to the Structural Analysis of Narratives," published in 1966, Roland Barthes argued that "literature, particularly today, make[s] a language of the very conditions for language." "Language never ceases to accompany [literary] discourse," wrote Barthes, "holding up to it the mirror of its own structure" (85). For the Russian Formalists a hallmark of literariness, reflexivity in literary discourse became, in turn, a structuralist desideratum. By deautomatizing the experience of stories--by exposing the conventions that prompt readers to interpret certain modes of discourse as narrative--contemporary writing enables the analyst to map narrative structures more explicitly and exhaustively than ever before (cf. Lodge 24). Narratology and narrative experimentation go, in this sense, hand-in-hand. Both work to displace the myth that certain stories are simply-unanalyzably--good or bad; both promote, instead, reasoned analysis of storytelling as the strategic manipulation of symbols arranged in time. In what Barthes described as a broadly structuralist activity that spanned poets as well as poeticians, both analysts and artists focused attention on the basic units, combinatorial mechanisms, and communicative functions of narratives. As a result, stories could be viewed as the product of core cognitive principles--fundamental dispositions and capabilities--at work in all our speech, thought, and behavior. So far, so good. Yet to these methodological assumptions Barthes added another, much more difficult to justify and deleterious, I would argue, in its consequences. The additional assumption is that today's literature is not merely reflexive but metalinguistic, in the technical sense of that term. Thus, in "Literature and Metalanguage," included in his Critical Essays of 1964, Barthes drew on modern logic's distinction between metalanguages and object-languages to contextualize (post)modernist reflexivity and--by extension--the new science of narrative that it had made possible. Echoing arguments that were published the same year in his book Elements of Semiology (89-94), Barthes noted that The [object-language] is the very matter subject to logical investigation; metalanguage is the necessarily artificial language in which we conduct this investigation. Thus [...] I can express in a symbolic language (metalanguage) the relations, the structure of a real language [i.e., object-language]. (97) By the same token, says Barthes, although at one time "literature never reflected upon itself" and "never divided itself into an object at once scrutinizing and scrutinized," more recently, through the efforts of stylistic innovators such as Flaubert, Mallarme, Proust, and Robbe-Grillet, literary discourse has by degrees assumed an essentially metalinguistic function (97). It has itself begun to ask the question: "What is literature?" (98). Barthes's argumentation here travels down a slippery slope. On the basis of the claim that artists have started to write literature that is in some sense reflexively about literature, Barthes then makes the further claim that today's literary language is in fact a language about language--a metalanguage in terms of which other, older literary discourse is describable as an object-language (98). Given the conditions that have to be met for a language to qualify as a metalanguage, however, this second claim is much stronger than the first. It is not, I submit, a defensible c laim. And, as part of the genealogy of the meta- metaphor in recent critico-theoretical discourse, Barthes's running together of the reflexive with the metalinguistic helped create a whole way of seeing that now needs to be reexamined and recontextualized. This way of seeing produced in its turn a way of talking about texts in terms of layers and levels, the higher and the lower, the embedding and the embedded, the frame and the slot within the frame. …

Journal Article
22 Jun 2000-Style
TL;DR: Forster's "terminal note" of the last moment of the greenwood as discussed by the authors is the most famous example of such an anachronism in the history of the English greenwood, where Forster's lovers finally disappear into an England of the past.
Abstract: Dedicating Maurice "to a happier year," E M Forster sums up the many ways his novel looks to the future Maurice waited 57 years to be published, because Forster felt it had to wait for a time in which its desires could express themselves without restraint, recrimination, or embarrassment While waiting for its interpretive community to assemble, the novel was perpetually revised and refinished, finding in future advice and conversation the changes necessary to make it make sense [1] And the novel looked to the future by predicting experiences Forster himself had not yet had His real-life sex life began later, and when it did, Forster often described it in terms that Maurice had provided [2] In its public and private life, then, Maurice is a novel whose moment is to come But even as it waits for its future, Maurice looks to the past In his "Terminal Note" to the novel, Forster admits that his ending, in which Maurice and his lover escape society, "belongs to an England where it was still possible to get lost It belongs to the last moment of the greenwood" (254) Maurice is set in Georgian England, but Forster's lovers finally disappear into an England of the past; they escape a society from which, by 1913, no such escape was possible Forster risked this anachronism because "a happy ending was imperative": "I was determined that in fiction anyway two men should fall in love and remain in it for the ever and ever that fiction allows, and in this sense Maurice and Alec still roam the greenwood" (250) But Forster knew that love's imperative had distended his novel into the past, even as love's diffidence distends it into the future Roaming forever a world of the past, and waiting for the happier year that was not any longer possible, Maurice and Alec inhabit a novel twisted in the grip of time These distensions are Maurice's notorious flaws They result, it seems, from self-hatred and indecision, from escapism and self-indulgence, and have therefore disappointed readers of all kinds Read differently, however, these flaws might be virtues: what if we were to read Maurice's dedications to past and future not as mistakes or misgivings but as the sign of an experimental temporality? As a version of modernist time, Maurice's temporality has surprising powers It reflects, first of all, a conception of selfhood more richly unconventional than that endorsed by many of the readers disappointed with Forster's failure to publish Maurice; it endorses that conception of selfhood with a corresponding style of narrative, one that, like the novel's paratextual time-frame, defies laws of sequence and of tense; and it causes, in the process, a short-circuit in what Paul Ricoeur has called the "healthy circle" of time and narrative (I 3) In the final analysis, these powers so closely resemble those which elsewher e characterize Forster's writing that Maurice's temporality emerges as the very mechanism of Forster's ingenuity Maurice's temporality is common to the extent that it matches that of any utopian fiction Utopias project an idealized past into an idealized future They presume, as Maurice does, that a "happier year" will come when past possibilities return renewed The utopia Maurice most significantly resembles is that of Edward Carpenter, the first great theorist of "homogenic" love, who inspired Forster and many others with his justifications of the "Love of Comrades" (Maurice was in fact "the direct result of a visit to Edward Carpenter at Millthorpe" [Maurice 249]) Among other things, Carpenter seems to have lent Maurice his way of basing the future on the past In works including Homogenic Love (1894), Carpenter tends to justify a homophilic future through reference to the role played by homosexual and homosocial bonds in great civilizations of the past He seems to have convinced Forster that homosexuality would gain greatest acceptance if refracted through cultural nostalgia--if aligned with longing for such th ings as the English greenwood …

Journal Article
22 Mar 2000-Style
TL;DR: The authors argued that the privileging of Ishmael's perspective and interpretations over the sophisticated but oblique performances of Ahab is a serious critical blunder, which carries with it an unquestioned epistemological alignment with Ishmaels and leads to a skewed reading of the text.
Abstract: In Moby-Dick, Herman Melville describes Captain Ahab as "a man of greatly superior natural force, with a globular brain and ponderous heart [,] one in a whole nation's census--a mighty pageant creature" (71) More than a century after the figure's conception, William Faulkner points to this one-legged hero as the most original character in American letters Yet, for some reason, Ishmael, and not Ahab, has remained the darling of Melville critics I believe that the privileging of Ishmael's perspective and interpretations over the sophisticated but oblique performances of Ahab is a serious critical blunder--a move that carries with it an unwarranted assumption that Ishmael's concerns correspond with the interests of the text The problem begins when there is an unquestioned epistemological alignment with Ishmael His assumptions--that Ahab is mad and his quest is unreasonable--are too often quietly, trustingly adopted by readers, who may sense ironic distance between Ishmael and Melville, but who nevertheless accept Ishmael's descriptions of the captain and his motivations [1] Such a tack in reading is critically valid and has stood a test of time, but it issues from a limited perspective Placing confidence in Ishmael as witness to Ahab's monomania leads to a skewed reading of the text [2] When we stop looking through the eyes of a lowly sailor who must have everything explained to him, and who must pathologically interpret his world to feel adequate to it, the rest of the text changes dramatically: the objects of Ishmael's study--the whales, the various whaling implements and trophies, the ship, the sailors around him--all mean differently Likewise, Ishmael's own experiences change (that is, to the reader they change) Such is the case with Ishmael's assessment of Ahab Granted, what we know of the captain comes by way of Ishmael, but Ishmael naively judges the man, and although Ishmael cannot understand Ahab on Ahab's own terms, we, as careful readers, can comprehend his existence as a life distinct from the narrator's Once we stop reading with Ishmael, it becomes clear that Ahab serves as the center of a highly developed epistemology that competes with and eludes the narrator's comprehension [3] The trophies that appear throughout the text confound Ishmael These invested objects of significance, which recognizably carry their meaning with them, are manifest examples of this other-than-interpretive system of knowing--exhibits of this system, if you will And Melville uses the act of possessing trophies, particularly the act of eating trophies, to show graphically how this system works If we stop looking through Ishmael's eyes, we can see Melville has developed a complex system of ingestion to show how a specific type of knowledge communicates Ishmael cannot see that Ahab belongs to an epistemological system constructed on how meaning materially invests language and how language performs that meaning [4] I argue that to understand Moby-Dick thoroughly, we must recontextualize Ahab and his entire textual existence and v iew him as operating within his own textual logic, one separate from Ishmael's, for as that Leyden jar of material rhetoric, himself, claims, "Ahab is Ahab"--Ahab is not Ishmael Philological and epistemological from the outset, Melville's nautical journey explores different ways that language signifies, that it generates knowledge The tome aptly begins with a consideration of linguistic origins, with various etymologies for "whale" From this exploration, Melville proceeds to a collection of literary extracts concerning whales and whaling adventures ranging from the ancients to his contemporaries All this occurs before the tale begins and establishes the context for this story before the narrator asks the reader to call him Ishmael Melville's interest in the knowledge swirling about the subjects of his text does not, however, remain confined to the front matter only …

Journal Article
22 Sep 2000-Style
TL;DR: Waugh's Brideshead Revisited as mentioned in this paper is a novel of the same kind, but with a slightly different setting, where the war is viewed as a farcical farce rather than a tragedy.
Abstract: Hegel remarks somewhere that all facts and personages of great importance in world history occur, as it were, twice. He forgot to add: the first time as tragedy, the second as farce. Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte. Evelyn Waugh's Put Out More Flags (1942) closes with the narrator agreeing with "poor booby," Sir Joseph Mainwaring, that "[t]here's a new spirit abroad" (222). Whatever the truth of this for the fictional world of this novel, critics have been virtually unanimous in discerning such a new spirit at work in the world of Waugh's next wartime fiction, 1945's Brideshead Revisited. As Valerie Kennedy defines it, this shift concerns not only style, but matters of spirit, as well: "Previously known to his readers as a purveyor of ironic, apparently nihilistic black comedy and as a writer of no explicit moral or religious persuasion, Waugh emerges in Brideshead Revisited as the author of a Catholic apologia whose dominant mode is that of realism" (23). [1] Yet if Brideshead's relationship to Waugh's earlier fiction, including Put Out More Flags, has thus generally been taken to be one of repudiation--of farce, in favor of realism and sentiment, of apparently amoral comedy, in favor of the high seriousness of a tenden tious Catholicism--little has been said as to why this "new spirit" emerges when it does, some fourteen years after Waugh's reception into the Roman Catholic faith. More particularly, Waugh scholarship has remained largely quiet on the question of the relationship between the war with which both these texts deal and this transformation in mode and morals. [2] While Sebastian Knowles treats both novels specifically in terms of their renderings of World War II, and declares Brideshead to represent a radically new, censorious perspective on the war (191), how the war itself inflects this change remains unclear. Yet the war, I argue, is central not only to the timing of Waugh's stylistic departure in Brideshead, but also to what these two novels have to say about historical experience and its relationship to that suprahistorical realm to which Brideshead directly refers. In Put Out More Flags, World War II figures not solely as a single historical event, but as an exemplum, as the repetition of a Western past defined primarily by the cyclical rehearsal of interpersonal treachery and military violence. As such, the war in this novel serves to reinforce the view of history as both circular and morally vacuous, a view that has been operative in Waugh's fiction since 1928's Decline and Fall, and to further validate the early farces' depiction of a world governed by meaningless motion and inhuman repetition. Yet as we shall see, Waugh's experience, as revealed in his letters and diaries, of the war's absurdity affronted his own feeling that this war was a matter for high seriousness. Indeed, filling him with a weariness w ith the absurd, the war prompts in Waugh a new artistic search for a subject that transcends mere farce, and the exploration in Brideshead of characters and events that escape the merely laughable by way of their participation in a spiritual, and not just historical, narrative. This new focus on "the operation of grace" (Brideshead 7) in history entails a reconfiguration of his fiction's conception of history, one in large part enacted in the novel's use of the war. On the one hand, the wartime world of the novel's Prologue and Epilogue stands in stark contrast to that evoked by the memoirs constituting the bulk of the novel, and helps introduce a sense of history as ruptured rather than repeated, precisely as the war stands in the novel for the triumph of the secular Hooper and the dwindling of that tradition rooted in faith represented by the Flyte family. Yet while the novel thus operates almost as the tragic prelude and explanation for the farcical world of soulless repetition found in Put Out More Flags, Brideshead's new concern with the eternal also retains, by way of its engagement with the significance of the war, a sense of permanence or repetition through history. …

Journal Article
22 Mar 2000-Style
TL;DR: Play It As It Lays as discussed by the authors is one of the very few Hollywood novels that focuses exclusively on the effects of the culture industry on women, and it is a classic example of post-modern tragedy.
Abstract: Play It As It Lays remains one of the most astute--and troubling--literary investigations of the causes and consequences of the Hollywood-led culture industry. The novel is unique within the subgenre of the Hollywood novel since it is one of the very few that focuses exclusively on the effects of the culture industry on women. Most of the best known Hollywood novels are concerned with the integrity and art of male protagonists, whose agency is construed in explicitly masculinist ways. Nathanael West's Day of the Locust, F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Last Tycoon, Norman Mailer's Deer Park, and Raymond Chandler's The Little Sister are just a few of many Hollywood novels that exemplify the subgenre' s overreliance on the equation of artistic integrity and masculinity. This tendency is comparable to the en-gendering of mass culture that Andreas Huyssen (among others) has argued is a characteristic of modernism. Hollywood novelists, like modernists, encode mass culture as a "feminine" discourse that functions as a co nvenient other for the sanctified, but beleaguered aesthetic discourse--a discourse, moreover, that is based on patriarchal, subject-object epistemology. Just so, both Hollywood and modernist novels participate in the oedipal narrative theorized by Freud and Lacan in which it can be said that "Woman does not exist" and "Woman is the symptom of Man." [1] Day of the Locust established the ideological project of the Hollywood novel, a project that casts the artist as flawed subject who cannot distance himself from the desire that is generated by Hollywood for an inaccessible, impenetrable object (figured by a beautiful, bad actress). The tragedy of Tad Hackett is that he cannot escape the fate of all those alienated workers who have "come to California to die" (Locust 23). The artist is caught up in the angry crowd that feels cheated by the false promise of Hollywood to compensate them for years of routinized labor. In Tad's painting, "The Burning of Los Angeles," the angry mob is chasing after a mindlessly smiling Faye Greener, whose smile indicates the extent to which she is indifferent to the desire she activates. Like Day of the Locust, Little Sister is concerned with midwesterners whose desires bring them to Hollywood. And like Locust, Little Sister seeks to demystify this desire by demystifying its object. Chandler's Hollywood is as shabby as West's Holl ywood. But even though this knowledge comes as early and easily to Marlowe as it did to Tod Hackett, it doesn't diminish the desire. Mavis Weld, the deceitful actress whose cause Marlowe takes up, might be a more successful actress than Faye, but she is just as mannered and antimimetic. Play It As It Lays takes one of these objects of desire for its progatonist. The novel eschews all such embedded ideologies as it tells the story of a disaffected actress without recourse to any culturally available counternarratives. In its overt revision of Hemingway's existential modernism, Play It As It Lays suggests how little this pair (patriarchy and modernism) speaks to the current historical conjuncture. The novel's bleak tone and minimalist style testify to the dilemmas confronting the subject in general (but especially the female subject) when no alternative ideologies seem capable of saving us from the reification that comes with participation in a commodity culture. Consequently, the novel belongs to what James M. Mellard has recently called the postpatriarchal, postoedipal universe theorized by the "New Lacanians" within which the "lack in the other" is in fact a constitutive lack in the subject herself. Herein, I would argue, lies the novel's distinctiveness within the canon of the Hollywood n ovel: unlike earlier, malepenned Hollywood novels whose tragedy is a consummately modernist tragedy, Play It As It lays is best read as a "postmodern tragedy" according to which the empty subject is infatuated with death in actual or symbolic forms. While the problem of Locust and Little Sister was too much desire, the problem of Play It As It Lays is too little. …

Journal Article
22 Jun 2000-Style
TL;DR: The question of whether or not history should rely on narrative is one of the most important questions in the history of the past few decades as mentioned in this paper, and it has been widely discussed in the literature.
Abstract: From the 1930s to the 1960s, the problem of the relations between narrative and historiography often was posed in normative terms. The question was: Should historians use narrative? Does that form provide an adequate type of knowledge? In the United States, philosophers of science sometimes deplored what they held to be history's excessive reliance on narrative. According to them, that reliance kept history in the situation of an imperfect science. Unlike physics or biology, history was unable to bring the phenomena it was studying under a "general law"; it could at best offer "explanation sketches," which needed "filling out" in order to turn into "full-fledged explanations" (Hempel 351). Yet other philosophers challenged the idea that science was unified, the only way of accounting for a phenomenon being to identify the law that "covered" it. Making the case for alternative models, they contended that story-telling constituted a legitimate means of making sense of things, one that provided a "primary cognit ive instrument" as powerful as--if different from--the general laws of the natural and theoretical sciences (Mink 185). In France, the debate opposed the historians of the so-called Annales School to their "positivist" predecessors. Rejecting what they called "event history" (histoire evenementielle) and "narrative history" (histoire-recit), the Annalistes advocated "problem-oriented history" (histoire-probleme): a kind of research that would move away from recounting political, military, and diplomatic events, analyzing instead "the problems that are raised by those events," and doing so on the basis of an "explicit conceptual elaboration" (Furet 56-57). Yet the Annalistes never described the new, better discursive forms that were to replace narrative, and Paul Ricoeur showed that they had not fully carried out their agenda in the domain of textual organization. Indeed, according to Ricoeur, even such a programmatically non-narrative work as Fernand Braudel's The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II actually includes an underlying plot. Moreover, that plot is neither a superficial feature of the t ext, nor a remnant from a prior, obsolete kind of research; playing a central role, it supplies a "configuration" that enables Braudel to operate a "synthesis" of the many, heterogeneous materials that comprise his study (Ricoeur 216). These polemics and controversies now seem to be over. Scholars have shown that narrative is used in such disciplines as law (Brooks and Gewirtz), economics (McCloskey), and biology (Latour), and that it offers a perfectly valid mode of knowledge in specific situations. If--to borrow an example from the historian Hermann Lubbe--we want to explain why the German universities of Bochum and Dortmund, only 15 kilometers apart, both fund expensive departments of engineering and electronics, the search for a "general law" won't take us very far. For Lubbe, such a duplication and the resulting overcapacity can only be "explained historically" (544), that is, through a narrative that traces the origin of those departments and recounts their growths. [1] While issues concerning the relations between narrative and historiography are still raised today, it is less to assess the value of the historical endeavor than to describe its exact nature. In other words, the question is no longer: Should historians use narrative? It is rather: Do historians necessarily rely on narrative? Answers to that question have varied since the 1980s. On the one hand, following Ricoeur, several scholars have claimed that history always (and necessarily) falls under story-telling. Michelle Perrot, for example, states in a brief description of her discipline that "history is narrative" (38), thus excluding implicitly the possibility that historical discourse might take other forms. Similarly, reviewing the main features of that same discourse, Perrot's colleagues Roger Chartier and Francois Hartog have titled recent essays "L'histoire ou le recit veridique" [History or Truth-claiming Narrative] and "L'art du recit historique" [The Art of Historical Narrative], thus positing from the onset that to do history can only mean to tell stories. …

Journal Article
22 Sep 2000-Style
TL;DR: In 1678, Shaw as mentioned in this paper published a play called Words Made Visible: or Rhetorick Accommodated to the Lives and Manners of Men, which is an allegorical play that brings the figures and tropes on stage to explain and illustrate their functions.
Abstract: In 1678, Samuel Shaw, a late Renaissance schoolmaster, published a play called Words Made Visible: or Rhetorick Accommodated to the Lives and Manners of Men. Written earlier for performance by his scholars at Ashby-de-la-Zouch grammar school, this allegorical play brings the figures and tropes on stage to explain and illustrate their functions. Turning the schoolboys' "toil" in rhetoric into a "pastime," it provides humorous instruction in the arts of style and delivery. Although its purpose is pedagogical, not literary, this relatively unknown Renaissance text deserves scholarly attention. Presenting a view of the tropes and figures that stands in stark contradistinction to generally accepted assessments of Renaissance understandings of style, Shaw's play can also serve as theoretical explication of Shakespeare's practice eighty years earlier in Titus Andronicus. Such remarkable congruency between Shaw's theory and Shakespeare's practice provides persuasive evidence that scholarly conclusions regarding both Renaissance instruction in elocutio and Shakespeare's rhetorical sophistication in this early play need revision. Shaw' s drama presents Prince Ellogus (Style) and his brother Prince Eclogus (Delivery) in debate over who has succeeded best at "propagat[ing]" their father Rhetoric's "Dominions" (101-02). With Affection a silent onlooker, Ellogus orders Invention to call forth the Tropes and Figures, who argue for their ubiquity, but the debate ends when Eclogus, in spite of Voice and Gesture's obvious servitude to the figures, declares his equal power: "But before we part I do here declare that Prince Elocution with all his Tropes and Figures signifies nothing without Pronunciation" (187). This avowed inseparability between figure and behavior, both of which are connected to thought (invention) and emotion (affections), is also announced at the beginning of the play when Prologus states that "men live Tropes and Figures as well as speak them: and this is the thing that is principally design'd to be represented to you" (99). Trope repeats the point, and explicitly extends the domain of figures to thought, ideology and act ion, when he boasts that both he and Figure govern "not onely in those babbling things call'd words [...] but in manners and minds, in practices and principles too" (109). Not only does Shaw make explicit that tropes and figures are thought patterns or arguments reflected in speech, action, and ideology, but also that all human activity is figure, language. Despite Eclogus's accusation that the figures and tropes draw language from a plain and honest style to an artificial and deceptive manner of speaking (Shaw is familiar with the common charges brought against rhetoric), the figures each reply in turn that they are as necessary for virtue as for vice and that they exercise power everywhere. Figure explains that "Tropes and Figures do indifferently serve the designs of Vertue and honesty, as well as their contraries, as we hope to make evident to you before you go hence" (109). Trope says to his son Metonimy, "[I]t is plain the World hath but two parts, good men and bad, and I see you have got them both," and then addresses Prince Eclogus: "[I]f you can shew him a man, that is neither good nor bad nor both, nor neither, he shall confess him to be an Alien to his Dominions" (1 15). Metonimy has introduced himself as "the great Nomenclator of the World," but excuses himself from an account of all his conquests since "what is most signal, where every thing is signal, it is hard to say" (113). Invention mentions that the four sons of Trope (metaphor, metonymy, synecdoche, irony) could be called by the "four parts of the World" or "the four quarters of the Heavens" (112), the claim signifying their ubiquity. Irony too claims that "dissimulation and deceit are as necessary to the practice of Vertue as to the propagation of Vice. Can any man wisely manage the office of a King, a Captain or a Master of any kind, that does not sometime pretend to a displeasure, which he has not really conceiv'd, assume a severity which is not really in his nature, and wink at a fault which yet he sees plain enough? …

Journal Article
22 Mar 2000-Style
TL;DR: Kennelly et al. as mentioned in this paper investigated the semantics and pragmatics of various phrasal and clausal complements to the verb see in O'Connor's fiction, and showed that the use of the copula and copula can promote an intense conviction and 'alien' view through emotion and a reliance on a clear, easily understood literary style.
Abstract: David Durian [1] Very slowly, his expression changed a if he [Bevel] were gradually seeing appear what he didn't know he'd been looking for. Flannery O'Connor, "The River" "We are all damned," she [Hulga Hopewell] said, "but some of us have taken off our blindfolds and see that there's nothing to see. It's a kind of salvation." Flannery O'Connor, "Good Country People" Flannery O'Connor's near obsessive concern with the fallibility of human knowledge is widely recognized in the critical literature (e.g., Asals; Desmond; Dowell; McCarthy; Oates; Orvell; Reesman); Desmond, for example, comments that "a major theme in [O'Connor's] work" is "deceptive consciousness, the mind's capacity for distortion in apprehending the real and its proneness to closure when impinged upon by the divine" (36). In commenting on the importance of mystery in O'Connor's fiction, Orvell writes that "in essence, mystery is what is finally unknowable" (18). O'Connor herself wrote of one of her stories, "It's not so much a story of conversion as of self-knowledge, which I suppose has to be the first step in conversion" (Mystery 299). An essential part of self-knowledge for O'Connor is the recognition of the inherent limitations of human knowledge. These limitations transcend class boundaries. Although O'Connor seems to have been as "obsessed with the sham intellectual as she was by the prophet," Orvell (121, 152 ff.) demonstrates that even backwoods characters like Mr. Head in "The Artificial Nigger" are driven by their compulsion to demonstrate superior knowledge, in Mr. Head's case, knowledge of "the city." Despite the vast critical literature on O'Connor's fiction, there is barely a handful of intensely stylistic analyses of her work (e.g., Hardy "Narrating Knowledge"; Hardy "Dialogic Repetition"; Hardy "Free Indirect Discourse"; Kennelly; Kessler; Ludwig; Mayer; McMullen). Of these studies, only Kennelly and Hardy ("Narrating Knowledge") examine the stylistics of knowledge. Hardy ("Narrating Knowledge") examines clausal presupposition, which is the site of much contested knowledge in O'Connor's fiction. Kennelly analyzes exhortative discourse in Wise Blood. She argues that exhortative discourse "promotes an intense conviction and 'alien' view" through the use of emotion and a reliance "on a clear, easily understood literary style that uses the copula and concrete description" (153). Implication, or ent ailment, is another promising area of stylistic investigation of knowledge since a true proposition normally guarantees the truth of its implications. We show in this paper that fiction, specifically Flannery O'Connor's fiction, provides the data to refine linguistic theories regarding the boundary between semantics (e.g., implication) and pragmatics (e.g., presupposition). In particular, we investigate the semantics and pragmatics of various phrasal and clausal complements to the verb see in O'Connor's fiction. The prevalence of sight imagery and verbs of sight in O'Connor's fiction has been commented on frequently (Freeman 26; Kennelly; Mellard 53; Orvell; Reesman; Sloan 136; Shaw). Kennelly argues that Haze's s "visual errors" and "reliance on vision" in Wise Blood are part of O'Connor's metaphorical dramatization of "vision's inherent deceitfulness" (163-65). Orvell comments on the importance of literal vision in the reception of grace in several of O'Connor's works and concludes, "O'Connor's first principle is thus rooted in the perception of the world and not in some disembodied cogito: rather, video ergo sum" (168). But no one has yet investigated in detail the quantitative or qualitative stylistics of any of O'Connor's verbs of sight and imagery and how those stylistics are reflective of O'Connor's concerns with knowledge. As the following passage from Mystery and Manne rs indicates, there is a close connection between belief and vision in O'Connor's poetics: For the writer of fiction, everything has its testing point in the eye, and the eye is an organ that eventually involves the whole personality, and as much of the world as can be got into it. …

Journal Article
01 Apr 2000-Style
TL;DR: Alfredo Alvarez, known as "Al," was an influential broadcaster and reviewer of poetry in the intellectual British newspapers and magazines as discussed by the authors, who was one of the most politically involved critics during the 1960s and 70s.
Abstract: Anthony Holden and Frank Kermode, eds. The Mind Has Mountains: a.alvarez@lxx. Cambridge (U.K.): Los Poetry Press, 1999. 139 pp. $23.00 paper. During the 1960s and 70s Alfred Alvarez, known as "Al," was an influential broadcaster and reviewer of poetry in the intellectual British newspapers and magazines. In his weekly columns appearing from 1959 to 1977 in the Sunday Observer he molded opinion: poetic reputations hung in the balance. Praise from the pen of Alvarez meant that a poet was important. Being ignored by him or, even worse, condemned, diminished many a poetic talent. It was Alvarez who bought eastern European talents such as the Polish poet Zbigniew Herbert, and the Czech poet Miroslav Holub, to public attention in English-speaking countries. It was Alvarez who unwaveringly pleaded the cause of his friend Sylvia Plath's poetry. Alvarez's 1961 study The School of Donne is a useful application of ideas subsequently labeled "New Historicist" to the poetry of John Donne and his contemporaries. For undergraduates, such as the present reviewer, coming to Donne and his contemporaries' poetry in the mid-60s, Alvarez's study provided a breath of fresh air alongside duller and esoteric but no doubt more scholarly endeavors. Alvarez's influential Penguin anthology The New Poetry (1962, 1966) reshapes the map of postwar critical responses to British poetry. In his brilliant introduction, "Beyond the Gentility Principle," Alvarez takes issue with attitudes towards poetic "value." For Alvarez, criticism of poetry, and of what is expected from poetry, is too inhibited and too provincial. Alvarez favors poetry which lives on the edge psychologically of the extreme. He champions poetry that tackles directly personal or historical situations rather than sweeping them under the carpet or refusing to deal with them. He was one of the most politically involved critics during the 1960s and 70s. This does not mean that Alvarez advocates the cause of a political party, but he is aware in his critical writing on poetry of the circumstances reflected in poetry. His The Savage God: A Study of Suicide (1971) focuses upon the work of Plath and the study of psychotic states and their relationship to creativity. Not holding a university position, Alvarez illustrates the power of the critic as public figure, capable of determining the reception of literature. Al Alvarez was born in London in 1929. His family was of Sephardic Jewish origin. He was sent away from home to an English public school where he reacted to anti-Semitism by becoming an excellent rugger-player and boxer. He got into Oxford to read English, went to Corpus Christi College where he took his first degree in 1952, and gained his M.A. in 1956. Never one to do anything by halves, passionate about D. H. Lawrence to the point of obsession, he did the next best thing marrying the daughter of Lawrence's wife in 1956. The divorce came five years later, followed by a second marriage in 1966. In his autobiography Where Did It All Go Right? (1999), Alvarez observes that the decision not be an academic was a personal choice. Alvarez tends to gloss over the difficulties that someone with his background and temperament faced in the groves of British academe. Very few Jews found positions in British departments of English during the 1950s, 60s, or 70s. Moreover, Alvarez was, in British terms, too clever by half. He is extremely bright and controversial. Further, such cleverness, honed on Oxford and British academic traditions, does not automatically transfer to the academic world of North America where it is frequently misunderstood. So for whatever reasons Alvarez's professional path was one of uncertainty and risk. He moved from poetry editor of the Observer to poetry editor of Anthologies, to broadcaster, to journalist, to mountain climber, to professional poker-player (and writer on the subject). The Mind Has Mountains is a "liber amicorum" of tributes to Alvarez on his seventieth birthday. …

Journal Article
22 Sep 2000-Style
TL;DR: For example, the authors argues that the very "triumph" of Romantic poetry lies in its truth-revealing failure, when "the pursuit [of vision] is thwarted and interrupted, and finally broken" (134).
Abstract: AS if nothingness contained a metier. -- Wallace Stevens, "The Rock" From time to time, poets produce "poems" about being unable to write poetry. Among those who have contributed to this curious genre are Coleridge ("Dejection: an Ode"), Yeats ("Lines Written in Dejection" and "The Circus Animals' Desertion"), G.M. Hopkins ("To R.B."), and Dylan Thomas ("On No Work of Words"). Their cris de coeur are marked not only by an essential agony--it is after all, the poet's very essence that is threatened--but obviously by an essential paradox. The dynamic of contradictions that I propose to examine includes not only the structural and linguistic attributes of works that should-theoretically--not exist, but their effectiveness as aesthetic artifacts. It is obvious, for a start, that this effectiveness must derive to a considerable degree from the drama of the stymied imagination wrestling with its incapacity to realize poetic vision--what Jerome McGann parses as "the power of imagination to effect an unmediated (that is, an aesthetic) contact with noumenal levels of reality" (115). Although this drama is not unique to Romanticism, it acquires a peculiar focus and resonance in that context precisely through the centrality of imagination," "creativity," and "vision" to Romantic notions of the poetic process. For this reason (and considerations of space), I shall restrict my discussion here to Coleridge as an early Romantic, Yeats as a belated Romantic, and Keats as a counterexample. First, however, it is necessary to deal with the current problematizing of the very terms in which the drama is conceived by the poets and framed by my argument. For the New Historicists who have focused on Romanticism, the fundamental reality is "history," the flow of events (and of Foucauldian power vectors) as it relentlessly challenges the individual poet with its refractory dissonance and autonomy. At its most extreme, "history" subverts all imaginative harmonizings and resolutions with the sense of something--in Alan Liu's words-"inchoate, terrifying, and brutal" in the scheme of human affairs (499). These historicists privilege--in an ontological sense--their materialistic parameters over poetic "vision," regarding the latter as a specular Romantic construct, an unstable escapist fantasy evoked in response to the very real pressures of history. As Jerome McGann puts it, the idea "that poetry, or even consciousness, can set one free of the ruins of history and culture is the grand illusion of every Romantic poet" (91). For McGann, ironically, the very "triumph" of Romantic poetry lies in its truth-revealing failure, when "the pursuit [of vision] is thwarted and interrupted, and finally broken" (134). Clifford Siskin, in turn, sets out to historicize the "Romantic ideological illusions" not only of the poets but of those critics--including, ironically, McGann--who have been "intoxicated" by these illusions (61). More relentlessly than the other historicists, Siskin undertakes to dissolve the complex subject-object constructs of Romantic "ideology" into a system of formal generic relations: "In generically inquiring how that self [the modern psychologized subject] was written, I take such constituent parts as imagination, creativity, and development to be neither ahistorical ideas nor psychological truths, but formal features and strategies--parts that interrela te historically to produce a culture-specific whole" (11). In response, I would point out the poststructuralist tendency to set up terms like "ahistorical" and "truths" as paper tigers of absolutism that are easily demolished by the empirical relativism of "historically" and "culture-specific." But it seems empirically valid to conclude from the evidence of their writings that such pre-Romantics as Dante, Shakespeare, and Milton had some sort of "imagination" and "creativity"--not to mention "visions"--even if these phenomena were culture-specific in their manifestations and in contemporary ideological assumptions about their origins and functions. …

Journal Article
22 Mar 2000-Style
TL;DR: Stein's use of repetition and colloquial diction has been used to criticize the cultural norms that have tried to shape women's sexual identity through repression as mentioned in this paper, and to expose and undermine culturally reinforced biases against women's sexuality, especially lesbian sexuality.
Abstract: "You say I am repeating Something I have said before I shall say it again Shall I say it again?" -TS Eliot, "East Coker" In Three Lives Gertrude Stein explores the heterosexual and lesbian relationships of three ordinary women--Anna, Melanctha, and Lena In "The Good Anna," the first of these three stories, Stein uses repetition to criticize the cultural norms that have tried to shape women's sexual identity through repression As particular phrases and sentences recur; a caustic irony emerges within the narrative that exposes Anna's absurd and usually futile attempts to repress not only the sexual behavior of young heterosexual men and women, but also Anna's own homoerotic impulses [1] Since its publication in 1909, the stylistic innovations of this work, such as Stein's use of repetition and colloquial diction, have been discussed in great detail In A Different Language: Gertrude Stein's Experimental Writing, Marianne DeKoven explains how Stein's use of language is the beginning of a shift from conventional, patriarchal to ex-perimental, anti-patriarchal modes of articulating meaning [] The limitations of vocabulary, the condensation, the repetition, the surprising diction, and the unconventional word order are crucial discoveries for Stein They are points of departure, from which many characteristic features of her experimental styles evolve The most noticeable feature of Stein's writing between 1906 and 1911 is its repetitiveness It is undoubtedly safe to assert that no other writer has ever used repetition as extensively as Stein did in this period (28, 40) Throughout Three Lives, Stein specifically uses repetition or, to use her term, "insistence" to expose and undermine culturally reinforced biases against women's sexuality, especially lesbian sexuality Her repetitions in "The Good Anna" and the long descriptions of the protagonist's pained relationship with her own sexuality begin to break down the binary between heterosexual and homosexual Though Anna struggles with this dichotomy both internally (suppressing her own lesbian desires) and externally (in her relationships with men), she resists both categories; she seems unable to envision a system of homosocial desire [2] that includes same-sex erotic relationships Instead, by the end of the story, she perceives sexual desire of any kind as so abhorrent that she becomes an asexual figure Stein's mission in "The Good Anna" is germane to 1990s queer theory, which attempts to deconstruct these categories as it argues, in part, that bisexuality is a primal condition As Eve Sedgwick explains about her book, " [T]he analytic move [Epistemology of the Closet] makes is to demonstrate that categories presented in a culture as symmetrical binary oppositions--heterosexual/homosexual, in this case, actually subsist in a more unsettled and dynamic tacit relation" (9-10) Similarly, Stein, through her use of repetition, shakes up this binary and makes her audience consider the ramifications of such a dichotomy between self and other As a result, we can examine the ways "The Good Anna" points to early twentieth-century anxieties about homosexuality in America and reread this text as prefiguring some of the cultural work of queer theory Stein criticizes nineteenth-century attitudes about sexuality and domesticity through her portrayal of Anna's social and personal commitment to work Expatriate life in Paris had given Stein the freedom to live as a lesbian woman and to resist the conventional roles imposed on most women In "Paris Lesbianism and the Politics of Reaction, 1900-1940," Shari Benstock explains that "expatriate lesbians could act upon their sexual preferences, no longer finding it necessary to submerge their sexuality in the late nineteenth-century ideology of 'ennobling commitment' to community service or self-discipline" (334) Stein fights this ideology through her representation of Anna, who uses work both to suppress her own sexual desires and to control the morality of others …

Journal Article
22 Mar 2000-Style
TL;DR: In this article, the author J. D. Salinger's epiphany is defined as a moment in a literary work that affects the reader as (1) intense, (2) expansive in meaning, and (3) mysterious (its resonance or vibrancy exceeding any apparent explanation offered in the author's text).
Abstract: Strangely, no attempt has yet been made to find a pattern that can unite the epiphanies of characters in the works of J. D. Salinger. The books and articles about him that have appeared in the last thirty-five years include only a single item with "epiphany" in the title, and even there the word is used in a loose and general way. [1] Sources and parallels for Salinger's literary epiphanies have been sought in many religious traditions. Picking up the hints provided by the "recommended home reading" of "the Upanishads and the Diamond Sutra and Eckhart" that the two older Glass boys, Seymour and Buddy, urged on Franny and Zooey (Franny and Zocey 60 (FZ hereafter]), critics have looked for influences and analogues in Hinduism (Alsen), Taoism (Antonio), Zen (Goldstein and Goldstein, "Zen"), and Christianity (Panichas, Slabey). [2] But such references to other people's imaginings cannot reveal--may even distract from--what is distinctive about Salinger's own vision, the epiphanic pattern that underlies his chara cters' moments of revelation. These moments are nonsectarian. "The thing with Franny is strictly nonsectarian," Zooey says at one point (FZ 95), and although there is an aura of the "seer" (Zooey's own self-characterization [FZ 140]) about all the Glass siblings and even about Holden Caulfield, the type of "seer" they all embody at privileged moments is the modern post-Wordsworthian, secularized, and exploratory kind. Salingeris a gifted maker of modern literary epiphanies that need to be investigated for the unique pattern they reveal. A useful beginning has been made in a few studies that focus, in rather isolated fashion, on certain favored objects: Holden's hat has been studied in terms of his psychological history (Vanderbilt, Roper), and Phoebe's carrousel has been compared to its partial source in Rilke (Stone, McCort). But only a comprehensive look at Salinger's epiphanic pattern can offer what the reader of such a skillful post-Wordsworthian inward quester would like to have: the portrait of a distinctive epiphanic sensibility. In a recent book (Patterns of Epiphany), I worked out a method for studying the distinctive epiphany patterns of writers and applied it to a series of nineteenth-century authors. Here, I will apply the method to the epiphanies of Salinger. My guiding assumption is that the epiphanies produced by any given writer will manifest a pattern unique to that writer. I define an epiphany in general as a moment in a literary work that affects the reader as (1) intense, (2) expansive in meaning (that is, seeming to mean more than such a brief experience would have any right to mean), and (3) mysterious (its resonance or vibrancy exceeding any apparent explanation offered in the author's text). [3] In creating epiphanies, authors work with contents I have found discussed in the work of the French phenomenological theorist Gaston Bachelard. From Bachelard, I derive three basic components of epiphanic patterns: elements (in the ancient sense: earth, air, fire, water); patterns of motion (irrespective of whatever it is tha t moves); and shapes (most commonly, geometric), together with certain recurrent features that are occasionally linked to the above (thus, in one Salinger epiphany the color green is linked to earth in springtime, but patches of bright, pure color appear often, without requiring any "elemental" cause). Having identified in a writer these distinctive components, I next locate the author's "paradigm" epiphany. The paradigm is the one epiphany that manifests the author's recurrent pattern most completely and vividly. Thereafter, I study the pattern in its less elaborate variant forms and note, where appropriate, implications (psychoanalytical insights, for example) that the pattern may suggest. In Salinger, epiphanies usually involve a combination of two or more elements, but one of these sometimes will be suggested only vaguely by a color-link (as the mention of a gold medallion may suggest the fiery sun). …

Journal Article
22 Sep 2000-Style
TL;DR: The first-person narrator of The Sacred Fount as discussed by the authors is an apophatic writer who uses textual strategies similar to those developed by apophastic mystics to speak about God.
Abstract: The Sacred Fount, in trying to hold open a space for the unspeakable, uses textual strategies similar to those developed by apophatic mystics to speak about God In his study of apophatic languages, Mystical Languages of Unsaying, Michael Sells argues that the "aporia" of the ineffable in the mystic text--the problem of speaking of that which cannot be spoken about--results not in silence but in "a new mode of discourse" (2) [l] To speak of that of which nothing can be said requires a set of linguistic manoeuvres by which language is always undoing itself--first saying and then "unsaying" in an attempt to allow the transcendent to take shape "between" the words, "beyond" what can be said In The Sacred Fount, this restless double movement generates irresolvable ambiguities in the text: every gesture towards meaning is countered by a contradictory one, so that meaning is always temporary, always about to be turned on its head The first-person narrator, far from being the guarantor of any kind of stable mean ing, is himself caught up in the (il)logic of the apophatic strategies he uses on his fellow guests at Newmarch But though The Sacred Fount despairs of representation, it does not despair of meaning altogether The sayings and unsayings in this text, as in mystical texts, work to plot the coordinates of a space "beyond" the text where meaning resides, a space that is always, necessarily, off the page, and therefore exists "nowhere" It is this commitment to the presence, as absence, of an other space--"other" in the sense that it is posited as being irreducible to language-that distinguishes the textual strategies of James's novel from those of deconstruction and aligns them, precariously, with those of mystical texts For the mystic, language, as a material form belonging entirely to the human sphere, can only fail to represent God Thus thirteenth-century French mystic Marguerite Porete explains that in attempting to "describe God" (170) in her book The Mirror of Simple Souls (for which she was condemned by the inquisition and burned at the stake), she undertook "something which one could neither do, nor think, nor say, any more than someone could desire to enclose the sea in his eye, or carry the world on the end of a reed, or illuminate the sun with a lantern or a torch" (171) For the mystic, God can no more be enclosed by human words than the (infinite) sea can be enclosed in a human eye; language is at the same peril in trying to express the infinite as a reed in trying to uphold the weight of the world; human discourse can no more reveal God than a torch can reveal the sun And yet, eye, reed, and torch are all human words that help us to imagine God--they suggest to us how big, how far, how great, how simultaneous ly immanent and transcendent God is In Porete's text, it is not only the gap between the two terms of her analogy that is important but the frail connection If the sea cannot be enclosed in the eye, it can yet be "taken in" by the gaze; if the light of a torch disappears in full sunlight, a torch may still suggest to one who has never seen the sun what the sun is like For all the mystic's myriad protests against language, words are all she has if she is to speak of God And so she uses words--but uses them resistingly, contemptuously, violently, trying to break open their fixities of meaning and force them to avow that which by definition they never can avow When the narrator of The Sacred Fount hands his friend Ford Obert the "torch of [his] analogy" (64, 216), he is doing much the same thing as Porete--he is trying to show, by evocation, allusion, and suggestion, something he cannot say, to use words as a torch to illuminate the sun Ford Obert, like the ideal reader of the mystical text, takes the torch and follows the chain of associations until he reaches the sun: "I've blown on my torch," he tells the narrator, "till, flaring and smoking, it has guided me, through a magnificent chiaroscuro of colour and shadow, out into the light of day" (222) …

Journal Article
22 Sep 2000-Style
TL;DR: The analysis of chiasmus in Shakespeare's King John plays has been studied in the context of the recent Oxford Shakespeare Life and Death of King John review as mentioned in this paper, where it has been argued that the chiasm of dramatic action in King John is less than figurative; it is illusory.
Abstract: Lawrence Danson, among others, has demonstrated that certain rhetorical tropes as Elizabethans understood them characterize and order some Shakespeare plays. The action of Coriolanus, for example, amounts to a kinetic combination of two tropes--metonymy and synecdoche (142-62). To these tropes might be added hyperbole in Cymbeline, the "Ouer reacher" (or "lowd lyar") according to the sixteenth-century English literary critic George Puttenham (191-93). Repeatedly, Posthumus Leonatus, Imogen, Iachimo, and other characters of this romantic tragicomedy apply the prefixes of "out" and "o'er" to many words to convey straining ideas of unparalleled beauty, virtue, courtesy, or betrayal and degradation. Hyperbole so created registers what might be called a dramaturgy of hysteria, occasioned by characters' attempts to live in and make sense of a fractured dramatic world made up of pagan Britain, Classical Rome, Renaissance Italy, and Jacobean court. Given these and other precedents (such as that of George Wright), I a rgue in what follows that a chiastic trope, antimetabole, represents a microcosm of the experience of watching and interpreting Shakespeare's King John. More specifically, the many antimetabolic tropes of King John condense and translate for auditors and readers the various mirrorings and impasses of this chronicle history that help create its characteristic indeterminate meaning. [1] In an introductory section of the recent Oxford Shakespeare Life and Death of King John, editor A. R. Braunmuller remarks that an analysis of the plot of the play "'built around the question of who should be King of England' [...] produces an X-shaped, or chiastic, pattern similar to that in Richard II: like Richard, King John declines; like Bolingbroke, the Bastard 'rises'" (72). Braunmuller further asserts that "Shakespeare's factual material falls into two parts (almost 'halves'), and those two parts parallel other binary divisions: John triumphant and the Bastard detached in the first part, John indecisive and the Bastard confident in the second, for example, or domination by the older generation in the first and by the younger in the second, or female characters in the first, no female characters in the second, or lords loyal in the first part and disloyal in the second. Each division occurs or is announced or culminates in [scenes ii and iii of act IV], which might also be imagined as the 'crossing' of the chiastic structures I have already mentioned" (76). [2] Adrien Bonjour in an influential article first described and explored chiastic (intersecting) rising and falling patterns in this history play. The chiasmus of dramatic action that Bonjour, Braunmuller, and other commentators such as James Calderwood (351) attribute to King John seemingly materializes in the dialogue of Louis the Dauphin and Cardinal Pandulph. "But what shall I gain by young Arthur's fall?" Louis asks. "You, in the right of Lady Blanche your wife,/ May make all the claim that Arthur did" (III.iv.141-43). [3] Figured here in Arthur's fall and Blanche and Louis's projected rise is the X of chiasmus. What becomes important for assessing Bonjour's and Braunmuller's claims about chiastic design in Shakespeare's plotting of King John is our realization that this rise never occurs. [4] Arthur does die in the course of events, but John's son, Prince Henry, rather than Blanche or Louis becomes England's new monarch. Such schematic chiasmus is less than figurative; it is illusory. This fact suggests that any analysis of chiasmus in King John ought to involve first of all the play's language, which on occasion deceives theater audiences and literary critics as well as onstage characters as to the true nature of historical plotting. Omitted in Bonjour's and Braunmuller's applications of chiasmus to the play is an account of the repeated chiastic rhetorical tropes of the play and their reproduction, or registering, in small of the playgoer's or reader's dramatic experience--an experience different in kind from an intersecting rising and falling pattern of action or character development. …

Journal Article
22 Sep 2000-Style
TL;DR: The role of friendship in post-Holocaust life has been examined in this paper, where two survivors of the Holocaust offer cogent commentaries on the importance of friendship and its role in postmodernity.
Abstract: Dysfunctional friendship has become an ethical and political dilemma in postmodernity. In the dysfunctional nature of friendship, strangeness is a crucial factor. This strangeness is the recognition of alterity and the lack of relationship of otherness to the self. In this regard, two survivors of the Holocaust offer cogent commentaries. Emmanuel Levinas describes ethics as the face-to-face response toward an other (1986) while politics survives within Hannah Arendt's insight that "every single person needs to be reconciled to a world into which [s]he was born a stranger and in which, to the extent of his distinct uniqueness, [s]he always remains a stranger" (Essays 308). Arendt's experience after 1933 was that "an abyss had opened" to reveal "the disloyalty of friends" (14). Hence, the role of friendship had to be revaluated in the face of the catastrophe of the Holocaust. Levinas was and continues to be a major voice in this reevaluation of friendship since the Holocaust. With the inspiration from his ethic al writings, we can portray friendship as a response to the call of the other in a deliberate attempt to bridge the void between the self and the other. Despite these voices, some contemporary theorists maintain that friendship is still problematic in postmodernity. Jacques Derrida, who himself is strongly influenced by Levinas ("Adieu"), submits a volume often essays (Politics) telling us about the cogency of Montaigne's sixteenth-century outcry: "Oh my friends, there is no friend." Meanwhile, though Maurice Blanchot rhapsodizes about his ethical "friendship" with Levinas (Writing; Friendship), his political flirtations with Fascism during the 1930s (Bident) are problematic. Because dysfunctional friendship is becoming more and more of a pattern in postmodernity, we need more examples of exceptional friendship that can be unique and that can make the friend functional. The intersection of Arendt's and Thomas Mann's works provides opportunities to situate friendship in this manner. On the one hand, Arendt was a perceptive political theorist whose essays have been generally concerned with the loss of human freedom in political governance. She prefers the political writings of Plato to Aristotle and sees the crucial dilemma as placing at center stage "the typically Socratic question What is friendship?" (Life 101). Of course, the problem is how to answer the question. She often positioned her discussions of friendship as ethical comfort within the conflicts of a politically charged milieu. For this reason, Arendt's writings have become a lively subject of discussion in France. From her adaptation of Jean-Jacques Rousseau's role of compassion as a moral and political principle, Arendt is portrayed by one of her astute French translators, Sylvie Courtine-Denamy, as "asking questions about the place of ethics and generosity in politics" (241). [1] Since Aristotle, who claimed in his Nicomacheon Ethics that "the science for the good of man is politics" (300), the relative positioning of ethics and politics has been debated. But this positioning of friendship as the crucial ethical problem for politics is also the unsaid problem in the writings of Thomas Mann, Arendt's fellow native German who like her came to the United States in the aftermath of the Nazi debacle. Both Arendt and Mann used their writings as arenas in which to dramatize the struggle for the role of ethics after their departure from their homeland in the face of great political evil. Both had written prior to their emigration from Germany. But the departure from their homeland made them portray friendship differently in their writings. While Arendt was primarily a political theorist who used the principles of ethics and philosophy to engage her contemporaries in debates about human governance, Mann portrayed the great struggle between aesthetics and ethics and seemed to ignore the centrality of the political struggles o f his characters to obtain control over their lives. …

Journal Article
22 Jun 2000-Style
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors discuss the problem of reading the textual in the figurative, of reading what the text shows as an explanation of how it works, but who end up despite themselves in that trap.
Abstract: Since Barthes's S/Z, in effect, theories of narrative have had uneasy relations with textual theory. Structuralist narratology attempts to explain narrative figuration, or thematics, in terms of a perceived textual grammar. This position assumes that narrative expresses a generic logic (poetics), a genetic code. In an effort to preserve narratological discourse, late structuralists like Seymour Chatman replace the claim to deep structure in favor of something like "description," and attempt to abandon the relation between figuration and poetics. [1] Dynamic theories of narrative, some versions of which I discuss here, step into the vacancy created by the retreat of structuralist narratology. Where structuralist theories produced static, often grammatical models based on levels of the text, dynamic theories would like to explain narratives in terms of their own interiority and energy. Despite their claims to the contrary, however, the dynamic theories I discuss also see figures in the text--images produced by the text--as a code, a key that shows how the text itself works. A code here is a privileged construct in a text, like Paul de Man's "allegory," that is supposed to open up or reveal the workings of the text or of a portion of the text. But it makes little sense to believe that linguistic operation itself depends on the images shown in the text. Textual analysis appeals to a formal and logical stratum of language that is in principle independent of the specific images produced by a given text. While narratology usually speaks, reasonably, of narrative figurations as themes, as the text's thematic understanding of itself, in doing so it absorbs textual assumptions with greater or lesser degrees of consciousness, assumptions about the nature of textual operations that are rarely addressed outside the realm of these figurations. The code, the figure which represents the narrative, appears to represent the inner workings of the text, but to do so is to figure the text and so to become again its represented conte nt or theme. The code cannot reveal the workings of narrative; it can only express an idea of these workings that cannot bridge the gap to the textual operation it itself posits. While many approaches to narrative (historicist, Marxist, and others) do not confuse figuration with poetics, they do not engage the relation between narrative and textuality that defines narratology. Exploring this logical difficulty in dynamic narratology, I offer an alternative for narratology proceeding from the assumption that texts are symptomatic of their personal and cultural contexts. I am interested in writers who see the danger of reading the textual in the figurative, of reading what the text shows as an explanation of how it works, but who end up despite themselves in that trap. Consider, for instance, how Deleuze and Guattari discuss method in Kafka: Toward a Minor Literature. They propose to study the nature of the text, not its figurations of itself, but eventually rely on figures for it: "How can we enter into Kafka's work? This work is a rhizome, a burrow. The castle has multiple entrances whose rules of usage and whose locations aren't very well known" (3). The various doors, and kinds of doors (a burrow has only one), in Kafka's work, they say, are a "trap" set up by Kafka: "the whole description of the burrow functions to trick the enemy. We will enter, then, by any point whatsoever" (3). The description of the burrow is a trap because description in the text does not explain the workings of the text, but only leads the hermeneut ("the enemy") to think that it does. It is inte resting that Deleuze and Guattari opt to "enter" the text (3), to speak of the "Kafka-machine" that produces desire (as, in their vocabulary, any text does) as having an inside and an outside (7-8). They do what they had just said they would not do. To acknowledge this difficulty, they immediately deny that they do any such thing: "We aren't trying to interpret, to say that this means that. …

Journal Article
01 Dec 2000-Style
TL;DR: The authors reviewed the preparation of high school and middle school teachers by the Modern Language Association and found that the traditional separation of literary study plus theory from its practical application in both secondary school and university teaching is itself a theoretical model whose reconsideration is long overdue.
Abstract: Phyllis Franklin, David Lawrence, and Elizabeth B. Welles, eds. Preparing the Nation's Teachers: Models for English and Foreign Language Programs. New York: Modern Language Association, 1999. xiv + 423 pp. $22.00 paper.* PMLA 112.1 (January 1997): "The Teaching of Literature." MLA Newsleter 32.2 (Summer 2000): "Teacher Preparation-Supplement." Al-A12. Why would a review-essay about the Modern Language Association's newfound interest in the training of high school and middle school teachers appear in a journal mostly devoted to literary theory and scholarship? One could argue that the traditional separation of literary study plus theory from its practical application in both secondary school and university teaching is itself a theoretical model whose reconsideration is long overdue. This model has long kept separate teaching, research, and the teaching of teachers, a triple boundary where few cross either easily or frequently. I will take, therefore, a critical look at the continuing story of what happened after the MLA decided, with a little help from its friends at the National Endowment for the Humanities, to reevaluate its role in educating those who may ultimately hold its future in their hands: the secondary school teachers of English and foreign languages. It is both heartening to look at changes made by individual departments, in spite of straitened resources, and depressing to note how far many have yet to go; some departments have arrogantly opted for inertia, while others have, unwittingly, reinvented the wheel. Indeed, for this second group, fruitful investigation outside the boundaries of traditional literary and cultural study would have prevented the duplication of questions asked-and to some degree answered-by colleagues in related disciplines. I hope my impatience at times does not sound altogether ungracious, since I am reminded, from another context, of Dr. Johnson's simile: at this dawning of the new millennium, the MLA's emerging work with secondary school teaching is a little "like a dog's walking on his hind legs. It is not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all." I am very happy that the MLA is doing it at all because, to paraphrase the authors in the Cal. State (Long Beach) foreign-language program: the MLA members will "experience this fundamental rule of cultural assessment: that one learns as much about one's own culture as one does about the culture being studied" (173). The MLA contributors (and readers) will, I hope, continue to profit from a reexamination of some basic issues of educational continuity in the teaching of literature. The discussion that follows reflects the state of programs as elaborated in the Preparing volume itself, although most programs indicated, as did Indiana's, "watch this space" for future improvements. Hence, some of my comments may be dated (to ca. 1997-1998 or so), and if revisions are in order, I will gratefully stand corrected. My plan is to review Preparing a Nation's Teachers and to intersperse that discussion with brief comments on selected essays in the 1997 issue of PMLA focused on "The Teaching of Literature" (112.1) and in the Summer 2000 MLA Newsletter Supplement on "Teacher Preparation." 1. General Organization of the MLA Volume After a call to the general membership in 1994 for teacher-education programs to submit descriptions and evaluations of their work, the MLA editors selected twelve universities as so-called "models" for the preparation of secondary-school English and foreign-language teachers. Each of the twelve institutions is described in greater or lesser detail in a separate essay in Preparing, along with its philosophy and some historical background to clarify why its program is so constructed. Some (Illinois State and Norfolk State) include detailed appendices that complement their narratives. All give some demographics (numbers of majors and of teachercertification candidates), and all describe their liaisons with their School or College of Education (COE) and the degree to which each has control of what elements in their joint programs. …

Journal Article
22 Mar 2000-Style
TL;DR: For an author who makes such creative use of language and its semantic possibilities that he invents his own epistemological vocabulary, D. H. Lawrence has received surprisingly little critical attention for his innovations in the novel at the level of text as discussed by the authors.
Abstract: For an author who makes such creative use of language and its semantic possibilities that he invents his own epistemological vocabulary, D. H. Lawrence has received surprisingly little critical attention for his innovations in the novel at the level of text. [1] Because the arena of linguistical experimentation for Lawrence was mostly in metaphysics (he even explains his use of obscenity in epistemological terms), the impulse of readers has been to treat his literary language as if it were foreign, to translate it into intelligible doctrine without examining its function as language, without looking at what it does as well as what it says. This same impulse, I believe, accounts for why Lawrence has never been adequately acknowledged for his work in his theory of the novel as a genre. [2] Although a number of essays and chapters and two complete books consider Lawrence as a literary critic, it has been over ten years since anything significant has been published in this area, and what has been published usually discusses his responses to other writers' works. [3] Except perhaps in passing, few critics seem comfortable addressing those strange, forceful essays Lawrence devotes to the novel as a literary form--"The Novel," "Surgery for the Novel--Or a Bomb," "Morality and the Novel," "Why the Novel Matters"--and the reason for the critics' discomfort is not hard to fathom. While there is something endearing, even convincing about Lawrence's rhetorical style, its forced spontaneity, personal vehemence, and unqualified dogmatism seem inherently to undermine how seriously we can take his critical doctrine. The standard response to his genre criticism, where there is any response at all, is to ignore the rhetoric and somehow to extract a serious and consistent set of beliefs. [4] By isolating state ments of workable dogma from their rhetorical context, critics do achieve some sort of coherent meaning from the apparent confusion of Lawrentian rhetoric, but at the same time they also reduce Lawrence's genre theory to much less than it is or can be. [5] Certainly the main impetus behind Lawrence's genre theory, as it was behind similar work by Henry James, Virginia Woolf, and Ford Madox Ford, was primarily rhetorical. The theory, that is, was not as much concerned with defining or elucidating the critical terms of the novel as a form as with persuading people that the genre was worthy of critical attention as genre and thereby worthy of critical respect. Although Lawrence, of course, would never address this issue directly, other novelists constantly, explicitly, point out in their genre criticism that because it had never been formally analyzed, because, as Virginia Woolf puts it, no rules had been drawn up, "no thinking done on her behalf," the novel at the time was not taken seriously enough. James, Woolf, and Ford tried to remedy the situation by drawing up rules themselves, mostly by stressing the importance of the novel as craft--James, for example, explaining in his "Prefaces" the blueprints and conceptual rationales behind his individual novels, and Ford setting out the specific techniques of his own practice of impressionism. But while Lawrence, who theoretically despised any notion of literature as craft, also openly proselytizes for the novel as a serious art form, he does so in an entirely different manner. For Lawrence, as for his major contemporaries, language was always on some level subversive, and the novel was similarly conceived as a subversive genre-- one aimed at undermining established conventions of realism and at demythologizing more traditional literary forms. Whereas other modern novelists also incorporated this subversive strategy into the style of their nonfiction prose, none did so as pervasively and emphatically as Lawrence did. Bakhtin's idea of carnival is particularly applicable to Lawrence's genre theory in ways that distinguish his criticism from that of other novelists writing at the same time (see Problems 122-27). …