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  1. Topoi of theory and the rhetoric of Bruno Latour

    Since at least modernity, theory has been marked by prominent efforts to revolutionize or reform its own vocabulary and concepts. [...] One example is the work of Bruno Latour, who undertakes comprehensive redefinitions of an already existing... mehr

     

    Since at least modernity, theory has been marked by prominent efforts to revolutionize or reform its own vocabulary and concepts. [...] One example is the work of Bruno Latour, who undertakes comprehensive redefinitions of an already existing scientific terminology in order to propagate new ways to conceive the relations between subject and object. His proposals have far-reaching epistemological and political consequences, not only for the sciences but also for an everyday understanding of our position in the world. Michael Eggers has chosen Latour's project as the main object of this essay but refrains from any extensive comments on the intentions of his theory, in favour of an investigation into his linguistic and rhetorical approach. [...] Proposing the rhetorical procedures of actor-network-theory (ANT), whose most prominent proponent he undoubtedly is, Latour repeatedly underlines the strong necessity to dispense with the customary vocabulary of the sciences which represents attitudes he wants to overcome. He demonstrates how this might be done by redefining many established terms and using them with their new meaning thereafter. Notwithstanding these continued verbal reinventions of his terminology, it is possible to identify a number of linguistic and stylistic elements in Latour's texts that have a longer history and tradition. This article tries to pair Latour's own rhetorical features with examples from different theoretical contexts, not in order to weaken his argument or to question his intentions but to show that despite his claims to initiate new scientific idioms, he relies on traditional formal devices. It is the basic assumption of this essay that even after the gradual disappearance of classical forms of rhetoric, the ambitions brought forward by many modern thinkers, some of which have been mentioned above, have generated a new and powerful set of recurring stylistic elements that constitute a verbal practice with identifiable effects.

     

    Hinweise zum Inhalt: kostenfrei
    Quelle: CompaRe
    Sprache: Englisch
    Medientyp: Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
    Format: Online
    ISBN: 978-3-8498-1292-8
    DDC Klassifikation: Literatur und Rhetorik (800)
    Sammlung: Aisthesis Verlag
    Lizenz: Veröffentlichungsvertrag für Publikationen
  2. Philological paperwork : the question of theory within a praxeological perspective on literary scholarship

    It may indeed seem that while the late 1970s and early 1980s were the period when theory was successfully established in western academic discourse, we have now entered an era "after theory" in which not only 'cultural theory' has come to an end but... mehr

     

    It may indeed seem that while the late 1970s and early 1980s were the period when theory was successfully established in western academic discourse, we have now entered an era "after theory" in which not only 'cultural theory' has come to an end but also a specific culture of theory has vanished from our seminars, departments, and universities: a culture of reflection, abstraction, and self-referentiality that had been at the heart of the humanities from the very beginning. And yet, theory is not so easily abolished but rather stored and maintained within each individual reading of a literary text in spite of empirical trends such as DH or pessimistic manifestos. Therefore, in what follows, Nicolas Pethes is interested in an additional aspect of the textual resistance of theory against the institutional resistance to theory: the relation between theory and practice, that is: the question whether acting is also one of the many languages of theory.

     

    Hinweise zum Inhalt: kostenfrei
    Quelle: CompaRe
    Sprache: Englisch
    Medientyp: Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
    Format: Online
    ISBN: 978-3-8498-1292-8
    DDC Klassifikation: Literatur und Rhetorik (800); Literaturtheorie (801)
    Sammlung: Aisthesis Verlag
    Lizenz: Veröffentlichungsvertrag für Publikationen
  3. Philological understanding in the era after theory

    "The golden age of cultural theory is long past" - with this statement, Terry Eagleton begins his puzzling reflections on the era "After Theory" - that's the title of his book, first published in 2001. If the invasion of literary and cultural theory... mehr

     

    "The golden age of cultural theory is long past" - with this statement, Terry Eagleton begins his puzzling reflections on the era "After Theory" - that's the title of his book, first published in 2001. If the invasion of literary and cultural theory has come to an end, as Eagleton suggests, theory will probably become a simple object of the history of ideas. But what theoretical implications accompany the discourse of a possible and even probable end of theory? In this so-called era after theory, literary criticism quickly decided to take new steps: the Anglo-American tradition of "Cultural Studies" attempted to replace the theoretical impact of French theory with a more empirical approach to literary texts. At the same time, good old philology raised its hand to oppose the topographical turn of cultural studies as well as the deconstructive turn against all forms of presence. [...] For Foucault, philology is nothing more than a part of the historical discourse of the nineteenth century, an old-fashioned term that lacks any impact on contemporary problems. For this and other reasons, Foucault showed little interest in more recent models of philology. But maybe instead of subscribing too easily to the notion that we live in an era after theory, where problems of literary theory are replaced by concepts of discourse and culture that no longer pay any attention to literature, what is called for is an investigation of the impact of philological understanding in the humanities.

     

    Hinweise zum Inhalt: kostenfrei
    Quelle: CompaRe
    Sprache: Englisch
    Medientyp: Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
    Format: Online
    ISBN: 978-3-8498-1292-8
    DDC Klassifikation: Literatur und Rhetorik (800); Literaturtheorie (801)
    Sammlung: Aisthesis Verlag
    Lizenz: Veröffentlichungsvertrag für Publikationen
  4. Borges : philology as poetry

    The titles of many of Borges's poems refer to canonical texts of world literature. One poem, for example, deals with the ending of the Odyssey and is simply called "A scholion"; others are called "Inferno V, 129" and "Paradise XXXI, 108", referring... mehr

     

    The titles of many of Borges's poems refer to canonical texts of world literature. One poem, for example, deals with the ending of the Odyssey and is simply called "A scholion"; others are called "Inferno V, 129" and "Paradise XXXI, 108", referring both to Dante's "Divine Comedy". These titles indicate that in his poems, Borges often keeps his distance from traditional poetical matters such as love, or, more generally, immediate emotions. Instead, he writes poems that gloss other texts, some of which actually relate love stories. Thus, Borges's poems stage themselves as philological commentaries rather than as poetry in its own right. In a similar vein and on a more general level, Borges likes to present himself in poems, interviews, and essays as a fervent reader of world literature, playing down his role as an original author. [...] In the following two sections of his paper, Joachim Harst tackles this question by commenting on two of Borges's philological poems, namely, the two texts on Dante's "Comedy". A ready objection to the idea of "philological poetry" is that despite Borges's selfstaging as reader, his texts obviously aren't philological in any academic sense. [...] The fundamental role of love for Dante's cosmological vision leads Harst to another understanding of the term "philology," namely, its more or less literal translation as "love of the lógos," the "lógos" being the cosmic principle and the divine word. Dante's Comedy can be considered a "philological" text in the sense that it is fueled by the "love of the lógos," and it discusses this love by citing, glossing and correcting other texts on love. Returning to Borges, Harst suggests that his two "philological" poems on Dante refer to this understanding of "philology." But by modifying the epic's theological underpinnings, they work to integrate Dante into a larger system which Borges calls "universal literature." Harst claims that this notion of literature, just like Dante's cosmos, is also centered on a lógos—albeit differently structured—and in this sense "philological."

     

    Hinweise zum Inhalt: kostenfrei
    Quelle: CompaRe
    Sprache: Englisch
    Medientyp: Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
    Format: Online
    ISBN: 978-3-8498-1292-8
    DDC Klassifikation: Literatur und Rhetorik (800)
    Sammlung: Aisthesis Verlag
    Lizenz: Veröffentlichungsvertrag für Publikationen
  5. The 'love of words' and the anti-philological stance in Roland Barthes' S/Z

    One characteristic of the work of Roland Barthes - and of that of other structuralist theorists - is the attempt to replace traditional forms of academic criticism, its unreflected claim of objectivity, and its dominant methods of 'text explanation'... mehr

     

    One characteristic of the work of Roland Barthes - and of that of other structuralist theorists - is the attempt to replace traditional forms of academic criticism, its unreflected claim of objectivity, and its dominant methods of 'text explanation' by science-based approaches which draw extensively on the ideas and terminology of theoretical corpora. [...] The relation between Barthes' position and philology deserves a closer look, however. What exactly is Barthes opposing under the label 'philology'? And do Barthes' theoretical advancements actually present a radical rupture with philology or do they not, at least to some extent, also build on philological methodology? To put it differently: do Barthes' works not, rather than entirely refuting philological methods of reading, serve to re-orientate philology itself - in line with or going beyond other contemporary views? To answer these questions, it will be necessary to sketch out at least roughly which notions of philology are and which are not compatible with Barthes' theory of the text, and which notions of philology may even form an integral part of his approach. If we come to the conclusion that philological interpretation does indeed form a part of Barthes' theoretical as well as practical endeavour, it will be important to determine its exact place and function. What happens to philology in such a theoretical environment? Is it simply given a 'facelift' or is it adapted to theoretical insights that cannot be dismissed? Ultimately, these questions point toward the aesthetic aspects of Barthes' theoretical language. Therefore, Regine Strätling examines whether a particular relation between theory and philology has had a part in the overwhelming success and the obvious attractiveness of Barthes' language of theory. Her emphasis will be on Barthes' essay S/Z, one of his most technical literary analyses as well as his most extensive and meticulous analysis of a literary text. Barthes himself promoted his 1970 essay as the first exhaustive structural analysis of a narrative text. With regard to the state of the art of structuralist textual analysis, Barthes claimed that after a period dedicated to extracting the macro-structures of texts, structuralism now had to face a new challenge: it had to proceed to a more comprehensive approach, also taking into account the micro-structures of a given text. And indeed, although Barthes in S/Z does not proceed literally word by word, he very nearly does so.

     

    Hinweise zum Inhalt: kostenfrei
    Quelle: CompaRe
    Sprache: Englisch
    Medientyp: Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
    Format: Online
    ISBN: 978-3-8498-1292-8
    DDC Klassifikation: Literatur und Rhetorik (800); Literaturtheorie (801)
    Sammlung: Aisthesis Verlag
    Lizenz: Veröffentlichungsvertrag für Publikationen