P       RNCU   REPO   ODER       E            P O S T M O D E R N
P  TMOD RNCU  U EP S  ODER  ULTU E               C U L T U R E
P  TMODERNCU  UREPOS  ODER  ULTU E          an electronic journal
P  TMODERNCU  UREPOS  ODER       E           of interdisciplinary
Volume 3, Number 3 (May, 1993)                    ISSN: 1053-1920

Editors:                              Eyal Amiran
                                      John Unsworth, Issue Editor

Review Editor:                        Jim English

Managing Editor:                      Nancy Cooke
List Manager:                         Chris Barrett
Editorial Assistants:                 Jonathan Beasley
                                      John Hoback

Editorial Board:

      Kathy Acker                     Chimalum Nwankwo
      Sharon Bassett                  Patrick O'Donnell
      Michael Berube                  Elaine Orr
      Marc Chenetier                  Marjorie Perloff
      Greg Dawes                      David Porush
      R. Serge Denisoff               Mark Poster
      Robert Detweiler                Carl Raschke
      Henry Louis Gates, Jr.          Mike Reynolds
      Joe Gomez                       Avital Ronell
      Robert Hodge                    Andrew Ross
      bell hooks                      Jorge Ruffinelli
      E. Ann Kaplan                   Susan M. Schultz
      Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett   William Spanos
      Arthur Kroker                   Tony Stewart
      Neil Larsen                     Gary Lee Stonum
      Jerome J. McGann                Chris Straayer
      Stuart Moulthrop                Paul Trembath
      Larysa Mykyta                   Greg Ulmer
      Phil Novak



AUTHOR & TITLE                                              FN.FT

Masthead, contents, and instructions for             CONTENTS.593
retrieving files 

Roberto Maria Dainotto, "The Excremental Sublime:    DAINOTTO.593
The Postmodern Literature of Blockage and Release"

Steven Helmling, "Marxist Pleasure: Jameson and      HELMLING.593

Eric Selinger, "It Meant I Loved: Louise Gluck's     SELINGER.593

"Talking and Thinking: David Antin in Conversation      ANTIN.593
with Hazel Smith and Roger Dean"

Nathaniel Bobbitt, "Xenakis Letters"                  BOBBITT.593

George Aichele, "Reading Beyond Meaning"              AICHELE.593

Kip Canfield, "The Microstructure of                 CANFIELD.593
Logocentrism: Sign Models in Derrida and 


Susan Suleiman, "Can You Go Home Again?              POP-CULT.593
A Budapest Diary, 1992"


Tim Watson, "Comrade Gramsci's Progeny."             REVIEW-1.593
Review of Antonio Gramsci, _Prison Notebooks,
vol. 1_,  David Harris, _From Class Struggle
to the Politics of Pleasure_, and Renate Holub,
_Beyond Marxism and Postmodernism_.

J. Russell Perkin, "Theorizing the Culture           REVIEW-2.593
Wars."  Review of Henry Louis Gates, Jr., _Loose
Canons_, Gerald Graff, _Beyond the Culture Wars_,
and William V. Spanos, _The End of Education_.

Leslie Regan Shade, "Women and Television."          REVIEW-3.593
Review of Lynn Spigel, _Make Room for TV_,
and Lynn Spigel and Denise Mann, eds., _Private

Debra Silverman, "Playing With Clothes."             REVIEW-4.593
Review of Marjorie Garber, _Vested Interests_.

Simon Carter, "Risk and the New Modernity."          REVIEW-5.593
Review of Ulrich Bech, _Risk Society_.

Eric Rabkin, "CyFy PoMo?"  Review of David           REVIEW-6.593
Ketterer, _Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy_
and Larry McCaffery, _Storming the Reality Studio_.

Lahoucine Ouzgane, "Women and Islam."  Review        REVIEW-7.593
of Leila Ahmed, _Women and Gender in Islam_.


Announcements and Advertisements               [WWW Version only]


Roberto Maria Dainotto, "The Excremental Sublime: The Postmodern
     Literature of Blockage and Release"

     ABSTRACT: Concerned primarily with American fiction, this
     essay reflects on the sublime as the defining feature of
     postmodern literature and discourse.  From Longinus to Kant,
     the sublime, a complexly aesthetic and social category at
     once, has been described as the individual's confrontation
     with a superior force that momentarily marks the disruption
     of the subject, which is later reconstituted in a state of
     sublime ecstasy and self-reaffirmation.  From its very
     outset, postmodern literature partakes of this paradigm: the
     "exhaustion" of literary possibilities considered by John
     Barth, as well as the "loss of the self" announced by Wylie
     Sypher, present a "momentary check" to a postmodern
     imagination which has to confront a tantalizing modernist
     literary tradition and a totalizing social order--a check
     that will be ironically overcome at the very moment a newly
     reconstituted subject will be able to "replenish" literature
     with new tropes, new stories, fictions, and fables of
     identity.  In the end, postmodern imagination and
     individuality will come out "sublimated" into a new
     position, alternative to traditional aesthetics and
     metaphysics, as left-overs, excrements of the symbolic order
     of both society and literature.  --RD

Steven Helmling, "Marxist Pleasure: Jameson and Eagleton"

     ABSTRACT: A study of how Fredric Jameson and Terry Eagleton
     differ on the issue of "pleasure," with special attention to
     the relation between their substantive differences and the
     textual effects (satisfactions, or "pleasures") of their
     very different prose styles.  Jameson's prose enacts a
     "vision" of "inevitable failure" that, Jameson argues, is
     incumbent, generically, on any "dialectical" criticism as
     such; Eagleton scorns any "defeatist" or "pessimistic"
     rhetoric, yet slyly recommends Jameson's tortured writing
     precisely for the "profound pleasure" it offers.  How does
     (or should) "pleasure" manifest in Marxist writing?
     Jameson's "Pleasure: A Political Issue" proposes (via a
     reading of Barthes's _Pleasure of the Text_) a redescription
     of Marxist pleasure as a version of "the sublime," but in
     the process inverts some hallowed Marxist themes, while
     Eagleton's manifesto for a "Marxist theory of comedy" in
     "Carnival and Comedy: Bakhtin and Brecht" unexpectedly
     founders on a pessimism at odds with Eagleton's avowed
     "optimism of the will."  Such tensions and contradictions
     indicate the limits, the possibilities and predicaments, of
     the rhetorical or libidinal resources available to Marxist
     critique in our historical moment.  --SH

Eric Selinger, "It Meant I Loved: Louise Gluck's _Ararat_"

     ABSTRACT: According to Kristeva, an "erosion" of
     imaginary paternity has undermined contemporary love.  In
     its uneasy family portraits, Louise Gluck's _Ararat_ traces
     one speaker's progress out of this postmodern melancholy.
     Rather than replace the old codes of romance with the
     "work-in-progress" of imaginative play, Gluck embraces a
     cycle of idealization, disappointment, and forgiveness.
     Pressing her language to a dry, antipoetic limit she turns
     the plot of a mass-media lament into memorable and
     particular verse.  --ES

"Talking and Thinking: David Antin in Conversation with Hazel
     Smith and Roger Dean"

     ABSTRACT: An edited transcript of an interview with
     David Antin by Hazel Smith and Roger Dean, in San Diego,
     February 1992.  In the interview, Antin talks about
     language, art, thought, and the methods and principles of
     his verbal improvisation.  The interview took place shortly
     after a performance by Antin in San Francisco, on the
     subject of _the other_.  --[ed.]

George Aichele, "Reading Beyond Meaning"

     ABSTRACT: The traditional logocentric understanding of
     text is a theological one;  it is the "theology of the Text"
     (Derrida) which postmodern %differance% refuses.  A
     postmodern theology of reading does not view text as a
     "work" or property, governed by an ethics and an economics,
     ideal meaning incarnated in various bodies.  Instead, text
     is uncovered as a material thing, formed of meaningless
     letters, on which readers violently impose meaning.  Three
     limit-conditions which define reading are the non-reader
     (Calvino), literal translation (Benjamin), and materialist
     reading (Barthes, Belo).  These point toward a concrete
     theology, a "reading against the grain," which can never be
     completely realized.  --GA

Kip Canfield, "The Microstructure of Logocentrism:
          Sign Models in Derrida and Smolensky"

     ABSTRACT: This paper explores a remarkable parallelism
     in stories about the theory of the sign in the usually
     isolated discourses of the humanities and the cognitive
     sciences. It presents a close reading of two works,
     "Linguistics and Grammatology," Chapter 2 of _Of
     Grammatology_ by Jacques Derrida, and "On the proper
     treatment of connectionism" by Paul Smolensky.  Both Derrida
     and Smolensky want to give a fuller, more complex, and
     dynamic vision of the signifying human.  Smolensky
     explicitly appeals to presence as a field in dynamic systems
     theory.  Derrida precisely defines such a field with the
     terms "trace" and "differance," but denies their reality
     because he rejects the idea of global control over all the
     atoms of signification.  The fundamental target of these
     critiques is the static character of structuralist or
     objectivist accounts of signification.  Both authors also
     note a semantic problem for sign models that requires a
     mysterious "semantic shift" from the unconscious to the
     conscious.  This semantic anomaly does not allow intuitive
     access to the basis of the sign model.  Derrida sees this as
     an insurmountable mystery while Smolensky thinks it can be
     penetrated.  --KC


COPYRIGHT: Unless otherwise noted, copyrights for the texts which
comprise this issue of _Postmodern Culture_ are held by their
authors.  The compilation as a whole is Copyright (c) 1993 by
_Postmodern Culture_ and Oxford University Press, all rights
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