Steven Chang marked it as to-read Structturalism 03, Ema Jones marked it as to-read Nov 23, Charles Hebenstreit marked it as to-read Dec 12, James marked it as to-read Oct 29, Structuralism Addresses, essays, lectures. Read more Read less. Undertowe added it Nov 10, Lists with This Book. The Reception of Structuralism and Post-Structuralism.
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Oxford, pp. Structuralism and Since demands, though, that its title be taken literally. It is significant that it should bear the date , though, for it is very much a book which closes and summarises the ideas of two decades, not a book which opens a new decade of inquiry. Indeed, the sheer expertise of these five essays, the sense of there being nothing significant to add after a page summary, makes one realise how much time has passed since Foucault published, in , what was then an almost incomprehensible book, Les Mots et les Choses, and since Lacan published, in the same year, what was agreed on all sides to be an absolutely incomprehensible book, Ecrits.
It has become a matter of knowledge almost, rather than opinion. Brilliantly expounded, with cracking pace and unflappable self-confidence, the book is a mine of information and an indispensable primer to anyone who comes to the subject fresh and ready to make a new conquest, just as it is an extraordinarily adept configuration of the field for those who may come to the subject weary from old failures to understand, or convinced that it is either marginal or obscure.
And it makes a great deal of sense. This goes a long way to explaining why. But with his pointing-up of synecdoche, Dan Sperber has illuminated a great deal. Likewise, when Hayden White comes to account for the kind, or status, of the analysis that Michel Foucault has been producing which is not philosophy, not sociology, not philology , he finds it useful to isolate a form of analysis which Foucault almost constantly uses — catachresis.
It looks like history, like philosophy, like criticism, but it stands over against these discourses as ironic antithesis This is why I call it catachretic. And there will be a trope for each. But all these tropes, for Foucault himself, are part of a vast historical catachresis, a bacchanal of misnaming, a naivety without parallel. Once again, the study of the rhetoric of an investigation is shown to be the proper instrument of decipherment. Similarly, Malcolm Bowie carries out the almost incredible feat of making Lacan comprehensible through an analysis of the rhetorical armature of his prose.
From Saussure he derives an enormous capital to invest in his idea of the arbitrariness of language; from Jakobson, the twin tropes of metaphor and metonymy. The Freudian triad, Id-Ego-Superego, allows Lacan to vary rhetorically almost to infinity the possible collusions within his own substitute triad, the Symbolic, the Imaginary and the Real. Can one really see these as mere figures of speech when it is the figures themselves that are the active principle of the rhetoric of the discourse that the analysand in fact utters?
He decides that a technique of alternating theoretical claims and close examination of texts will best bring out the kind of work that Derrida does. He starts, though, by giving a brief and excellent introduction to what the various published books are actually about, and listing them in order of difficulty.
When one focuses on events one is led to affirm the priority of differences, but when one focuses on differences one sees their dependence upon prior events. One can shift back and forth between these two perspectives which never give rise to a synthesis. Each perspective shows the error of the other in an irresolvable dialectic. They do not lay the groundwork for a new discipline — grammatology, he says, is the name of a question — but apply pressure to a system of concepts, upset it so as to make its presuppositions and limitations more apparent.
In his chapter on Barthes, John Sturrock runs the literary praxis of Barthes in double harness with a pointing-up of his political aims. So there is a common ideology at work here: of dissolution, of disbelief in the ego. He has undergone a dissolution because he is to be found everywhere in what he writes In that book, he can indulge himself in a vision of a country which has no hidden signifieds, no depths, no authorial profundities.
Everything is flat, vacant and empty. It is extremely useful to have these five essays to hand, as we turn into the Eighties, with resources of every kind running out, so that we may evaluate both the present and the possible future status of post-structuralism and deconstruction. But we should also be grateful to him for pointing up the political implications of post-structuralism as such.
True, he restricts himself to pointing out that the movement has been, in a traditional sort of way, anti-bourgeois, and that, as a whole, it has shown itself to be anti-humanistic.
But at least he has raised the matter of the political status of post-structuralism, which is usually not made a talking point at all. It is indeed such a fascinating subject, and treated at such vertiginously high levels of competence, that there has been a tendency to assume that its intrinsic interest exempts it from political responsibility. Meanwhile there are more worrying questions to be asked. But Mr Culler makes no such offer. It seems to me that, in getting rid of the authorial subject, or the originating consciousness, post-structuralism has also probably inadvertently made impossible the idea of the ethical subject.
And that is a matter which does have grave political consequences. For what is the deconstructive procedure of Glas? All down the right-hand column runs a text from the writings of Jean Genet. And what more diabolically clever way of making Hegel look like an idiot than placing over against the Hegel text, block lot block, passages of Genet? With homosexuality added, it would be sparkling, unassailable It betrayed betraying means breaking the laws of love.
It engaged in pillage. And lastly, it banned itself from the world by homosexuality. It thus established itself as an indestructible solitude. The argument has already moved on, however. In his preface, Geoffrey Hartman writes: Caveat lector. But Bloom and Hartman are barely deconstructionists. They even write against it on occasion.
Deconstruction and Criticism is really a companion-piece to Structuralism and Since, though it takes the arguments one stage further. They may as Bloom suggests actually meet at some extreme outer point, but for the moment they are split. Derrida, de Man and J. Hillis Miller belong to the world of Nietzschean plurality, the whirl of meaning, the endless slip of catachreses into each other, missing presence, lost identity.
But Bloom himself and possibly Geoffrey Hartman, it is implied seems to be taking up a kind of scepticism about the absence of meaning in words which relates more to the classical perspectivism of Protagoras. Although fully aware of the subtleties of the deconstructivist case, he has yet entered a firm non placet to any form of that theory which tends towards a nihilism of meaning.
Taking a variety of narratives, and of narrative devices, he manages to show that there is a whole class of narrative which is not susceptible of deconstruction at all, and so far from containing an infinity of equally possible meanings, cannot even securely be said to contain one.
Some narratives just insist on remaining obscure, for their own very good reasons, and Kermode regards this as a source of hope and meaning, rather than a cause for despair. Send Letters To:.
Oxford, pp. Structuralism and Since demands, though, that its title be taken literally. It is significant that it should bear the date , though, for it is very much a book which closes and summarises the ideas of two decades, not a book which opens a new decade of inquiry. Indeed, the sheer expertise of these five essays, the sense of there being nothing significant to add after a page summary, makes one realise how much time has passed since Foucault published, in , what was then an almost incomprehensible book, Les Mots et les Choses, and since Lacan published, in the same year, what was agreed on all sides to be an absolutely incomprehensible book, Ecrits. It has become a matter of knowledge almost, rather than opinion.
JOHN STURROCK STRUCTURALISM PDF
Amazon Renewed Refurbished products with a warranty. Return to Book Page. John rated it really liked it Jan 27, John Knight rated it it was amazing May 19, S Sanyal rated it really liked it Aug 23, A classic strurock in literary and cultural theory. Learn more about Amazon Prime. If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support? Originally celebrated for the way it negotiated areasoned way between what were extremely impassioned factions structurlism and their opponents, the book still offers the best andmost readily accessible account of the subject.
JOHN STURROCK STRUCTURALISM PDF
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