School of Culture and Communication - Research Publications
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ItemMichel de Certeau and the practice of representationFrow, John A. ( 1991)Michel de Certeau’s work, particularly the ethnography of everyday practices developed Arts de faire I and II, has been extensively appropriated in recent years by English-speaking theorists of popular culture. The appropriation has been rather selective, ignoring much of de Certeau’s output in, for example, sociology, history, and literary criticism. More to my point, it has taken from de Certeau a model of the popular which is at once powerful and simple, and which I therefore propose to treat in this paper both with respect and theoretical caution.
ItemRichard Rorty and the Poet's UtopiaFERRELL, ROBYN (Allen & Unwin, 1991)CARTOGRAPHIES is grounded in a theoretical framework which combines post-structural semiotics nd a philosophy of the body. Drawing particularly on the work of Derrida, Foucault, Deleuze, Irigaray and Benjamin, the chapters variously challenge the distinction between material reality and representation.Richard Rorty's vision of the liberal utopia, which he outlines in the introduction to his recent book, Contingency, Irony and Solidarity, is an explicit example of a narrative that is common, if submerged, in many recent adaptations of post-structuralism. The utopian pleasures of the text promise liberation from the cramping empiricism of science, the leaden labour of politics, and the dragging chains of metaphysics. Or is it a delusional escape? Rorty' book is dedicated: 'In memory of six liberals: my parents and grandparents'. This chapter dedicates itself to exploring the strange coupling of liberalism and post-structuralism.
ItemTourism and the semiotics of nostalgiaFrow, John A. ( 1991)In 1689 a Japanese poet travels to the deep north. Describing a tour of the island, he is nevertheless no tourist. His journey is in part a religious pilgrimage, in part the commemoration of localities celebrated by earlier poets, and in part an allegory of a passage into death. The religious dimension of his journey is clear. Basho peaks of being constrained to silence about certain things he has seen because of the rules he must obey as a pilgrim. Before their departure, his companion Sora changes his name, takes the tonsure, and puts on the black robes of an itinerant priest. And the shrines that Basho visits are at once poetic and religious sites, and often sites of natural beauty as well. Their auratic value, and their deep linkage to the past, is made up of one or more of three elements: a name (which may encapsulate a story, or a reference to a divinity); a legend (which endows it with a history); and poetic thematization. Places are sanctified, in a way that is neither simply religious nor simply aesthetic, by the poems that have been written about them, some of which are of such antiquity that they have taken on the anonymity of custom. Indeed, poetic theme and local tradition may have become inseparable, as at the shrine of Muro-no-yashima, where “was the custom. . . for poets to sing of the rising smoke, and for ordinary people not to eat konoshiro,a speckled fish, which has a vile smell when burnt”. The poems that Bashowrites in response are a form of homage: to the past poet, and to the place in its local particularity. They are texts to be read, but also material objects (strips of silk) left hanging in dedication at the site. Time and distance are abolished in the continuity between this gift described in the narrative and the poem that we read on the page.
ItemThe romance of exchange: Sir Gawain and the Green KnightTRIGG, STEPHANIE (Brepols Publishers, 1991)