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 5, Number 3 (May, 1995)                    ISSN: 1053-1920

Editors:     				Eyal Amiran
					John Unsworth, issue editor

Review Editor:				Jim English 

Managing Editor:			Amy Sexton 

List Manager:				Chris Barrett 

Editorial Board:

     Sharon Bassett 			Phil Novak
     Michael Berube 			Patrick O'Donnell
     Marc Chenetier 			Elaine Orr
     Greg Dawes 			Marjorie Perloff
     bell hooks 			Fred Pfeil
     Graham Hammill 			Mark Poster
     Phillip Brian Harper 		David Porush
     David Herman 			Carl Raschke
     E. Ann Kaplan 			Avital Ronell
     Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett 	Susan Schultz
     Arthur Kroker 			William Spanos
     Neil Larsen 			Gary Lee Stonum
     Tan Lin 				Tony Stewart
     Jerome McGann 			Chris Straayer
     Jim Morrison 			Rei Terada
     Stuart Moulthrop 			Paul Trembath
     Larysa Mykyta 			Greg Ulmer


     TITLE                                               FILENAME

     Abstracts                                      abstracts.595

     Phoebe Sengers, "Madness and Automation:         sengers.595
     On Institutionalization"

     Paul Naylor, "The 'Mired Sublime' of              naylor.595
     Nathaniel Mackey's _Song of the 

     Nathaniel Mackey, "Song of the                    mackey.595
     Andoumboulou: 23"

     Joseph Arsenault and Tony Brinkley,             arsebrin.595
     "Towards an Indexical Criticism"

     Virginia Hooper, "The Lamentation"                hooper.595

     James Berger, "Cultural Trauma and the            berger.595
     'Timeless Burst': Pynchon's Revision of 
     Nostalgia in _Vineland_"

     Elisabeth Frost, "Signifyin(g) on Stein:           frost.595
     The Revisionist Poetics of Harryette 
     Mullen and Leslie Scalapino"

     Paul Mann, "Stupid Undergrounds"                    mann.595

RELATED READINGS                               [WWW version only]


     Jeffrey Cass, "Cyberspace, Capitalism,          pop-cult.595
     and Encoded Criminality: The 
     Iconography of _Theme Park_"


     Tatjana Pavlovic, "Demystifying                 review-1.595
     Nationalism: Dubravka Ugresic and the 
     Situation of the Writer in 
     (Ex-)Yugoslavia." Review of Dubravka 
     Ugresic, _Fording the Stream of 
     Consciousness_.  Evanston: Northwestern 
     UP, 1993; ---, _In the Jaws of Life and 
     Other Stories_.  Evanston: Northwestern 
     UP, 1993.

     Mark Poster, "Techno-Communities." Review       review-2.595
     of Steven Jones, ed., _Cybersociety: 
     Computer-Mediated Communication and 
     Community_.  New York: Sage, 1995.

     Wendy Anson, "Intermedia '95"  Review of        review-3.595
     the 10th Annual International Conference 
     and Exposition on Multimedia and CD-ROM.  
     March, 1995.  Moscone Convention Center, 
     San Francisco, CA.

     Rebecca Chung, "Rethinking Agency."  Review     review-4.595
     of Patricia Mann, _Micropolitics: Agency in 
     a Postfeminist Era_.  Menneapolis: University 
     of Minnesota Press, 1994.

     Myles Breen, "Presenting Paradise."  Review     review-5.595
     of Elizabeth Buck, _Paradise Remade: The 
     Politics of Culture and History in Hawai'i_.
     Philadelphia: Temple UP, 1993.

     Tom Benson, "New Political Journalism."         review-6.595
     Review of Richard Ben Cramer, _What It 
     Takes: The Way to the White House_.  
     New York: Random House, 1992.

     Ivan Strenski, "The Ethics of                   review-7.595
     Ethnocentrism."  Review of Tzvetan Todorov,
     _On Human Diversity_.  Trans. Catherine 
     Porter.  Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1993.


     Selected Letters from Readers                    letters.595


     Announcements and Advertisements          [WWW Version only]



Phoebe Sengers, "Madness and Automation: On Institutionalization"

     ABSTRACT: This paper examines the ways in which totalizing
     institutions attempt to appropriate individuals, and the
     extent to which individual subjects can resist or subvert
     that appropriation.  A paradigmatic site of totalization is
     the psychiatric institution.  This institution mechanizes
     the patient; it reduces the patient to a sign.  The
     patient's identity is restructured to enable absorption
     into the workings of the psychiatric machine. Breakdown
     occurs when the machine exceeds its own logic; at the same
     moment, the patient exceeds the institution's totalizing
     grasp.  The very move to totalization leads to blind spots
     in which the patient can learn to move.  The analysis is
     first made at the level of a specific instance of
     psychiatric institutionalization, then repeated on the
     plane of theory to show that it holds in all situations
     where institutions attempt to totalize and circumscribe
     individuals.  --PS

Paul Naylor, "The 'Mired Sublime' of Nathaniel Mackey's 
	_Song of the Andoumboulou_"

     ABSTRACT: This essay situates Nathaniel Mackey's ongoing
     serial poem, _Song of the Andoumboulou_, in the tradition
     of the American "world-poem" begun in _The Cantos_ of Ezra
     pound and continued in Louis Zukofsky's _A_, H.D.'s
     _Trilogy_, and Robert Duncan's _Passages_.  Each of these
     works, in their own distinct way, holds out the possibility
     of a utopian vision created in and by poetry.  Yet these
     previous instances of the world-poem often have the
     unfortunate effects of reducing cultural diversity to a
     transcendent sameness in the service of an all-encompassing
     view of world history, in effect all too evident in parts
     of _The Cantos_.  Mackey's _Song of the Andoumboulou_ not
     only extends the genre's range of cultural references by
     bringing together the traditions of African-American music,
     Caribbean and Arabic poetry, and West African mythology,
     among others, with the Western traditions of philosophy,
     poetry, and music; it also attempts to cure us of the
     desire to reduce the representation of diversity and
     difference  to the kind of all-encompassing  sameness that
     compromises some of the initial instances of the American
     world-poem.  --PN

Joseph Arsenault and Tony Brinkley, "Toward an Indexical Criticism"

     ABSTRACT: The essay has been choreographed as an open form,
     where what is said can be open to what is not.  What goes
     unsaid may nevertheless be shown, indicated, or indexed (or
     show up).  Points of departure for the essay include
     parallel distinctions in Heidegger and Wittgenstein between
     saying and showing.  In addition to a semantics of saying,
     there might be this semantics as well, a semantics of
     showing that engages the ways in which "presencing . . .
     manifests itself [%selbst zeigt%]" (Heidegger) and "the
     inexpressible [%Unaussprechliches%] . . . shows itself
     [%zeigt sich%]" (Wittgenstein).  Readings of Wittgenstein
     and Heidegger connect with readings of Peirce and Benjamin.
     A concern with the distinction between saying and showing
     opens onto the possibility of an indexical semantics.  The
     question of indices will at times be the question of a just
     reading, adequate to the history that has produced the
     index, but often there is a historical reference from which
     I may want to hide.  Although no one can jump over his own
     shadow.  And what I leave unsaid may indicate something to
     add.  The essay concludes with Benjamin's presentation of
     historical indices, where he has "nothing to say [%zu
     sagen%], only to show [%zu zeigen%, to indicate, to point
     out] . . . to let it come into its own [%zu ihrem Rechte%,
     into its right, into its justice]."  --JA and TB

James Berger, "Cultural Trauma and the 'Timeless Burst': Pynchon's 
	Revision of Nostalgia in _Vineland_"

     ABSTRACT: This essay reevaluates the political and
     aesthetic implications of nostalgia.  It argues that Thomas
     Pynchon's _Vineland_, a novel often criticized for its
     nostalgic portrayal of the 1960s, in fact revises
     conventional notions of nostalgia so as to render a more
     complex sense of how historical memory is transmitted.
     Crucial to this revision is Pynchon's representation of
     historical trauma.  _Vineland_ returns to the 1960s not as
     to a site of wholeness and plenitude, but rather as to a
     site of catastrophe and betrayal.  The moment of historical
     trauma insistently returns.  And yet this same traumatic
     moment is simultaneously a moment of utopian possibility.
     This link of catastrophe and possibility in Pynchon bears
     resemblance to Walter Benjamin's notion of "jetztzeit," the
     critical, possibly redemptive "time of the now" that can
     emerge at moments of crisis far removed from each other.
     In _Vineland_, however, this moment is always mediated
     through the ideological lens through which it is received.
     Thus, _Vineland_ shows us the destabilizing political and
     cultural conflicts of the 1960s explicitly through the
     perspectives of 1980s consumer culture (those "fabulous
     60s") and the political culture of Reaganism (the dangerous
     60s).  The traumatic/utopian returns of history cannot
     escape these ideological vessels; yet neither can they be
     fully contained by them.  _Vineland_'s clear longing for
     the 1960s is neither quietist nor reactionary.  The reunion
     that ends the novel is a reunion with a traumatic past
     (that has been partly and problematically "worked through")
     and with the sense of political possibilities that flashed
     into being at the same pivotal moments.  --JB

Elisabeth A. Frost, "Signifyin(g) on Stein: The Revisionist Poetics 
	of Harryette Mullen and Leslie Scalapino

     ABSTRACT: This article takes Stein as one (if not the
     only) source for feminist avant-garde poetry--writing that
     uses experimental language to distinctly feminist ends.  A
     number of recent feminist poets owe a debt to _Tender
     Buttons_, and Stein's work remains a subject of homage.
     But, changes working their way through feminist thought
     appear in some feminist avant-garde writing that doesn't
     simply acknowledge Stein's language experiments but
     contests them as well.  I examine the influence of, and
     divergence from, Steinian poetics in Harryette Mullen and
     Stein's "modern" vision by merging "public" speech and
     "private" experience--the language of the public spheres of
     the street and the marketplace with the experiences of
     intimacy and the erotic.  Mullen and Scalapino blur the
     border between public and private discourse that Stein
     relied upon in order to reveal (and, paradoxically, *not*
     reveal) her lesbian sexuality in a revolution of ordinary
     domestic language.  In response in part to Stein, each poet
     illuminates language as a locus of the political and the
     erotic, altering both eroticized and "public" language as
     signs of a culture in need of a fundamental awareness about
     the relationships between our most private and public acts.

Paul Mann, "Stupid Undergrounds"

     ABSTRACT: In a seemingly endless series of bloated,
     aphoristic outtakes, micro-%Minima Moralia%, and
     not-so-blank parodies of po-mo parodies, the author offers
     to conduct you on a tour of various recently colonized
     sites in the so-called subculture.  Here you will witness
     the suburbs of deterritorialization, tattoos and nipple
     piercings, subliminal imagery and sound-effects generators,
     cyberspace malls, the virtual Real, quack scientists and
     stupid gurus, hairbrained (or is it hair-triggered?)
     conspiracies, dour industrial bands, stupid day jobs,
     revenant Situationists, trademarked plagiarisms, fuzzy
     fun-seekers, secret codes that are never secret enough, any
     number of surrogate revolutions, and your choice of
     temporary apocalypses.  Etc.  Intellectual slumming at its
     finest.  The purpose of it all?  A maso-critical critique
     of criticism.  You'd be stupid to download this one.  --PM

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