By Jeffrey Jerome Cohen
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Additional resources for Monster Theory: Reading Culture
For the sake of intelligibility a fashion has to be made and may constantly be made in the course of the maze, a few "messages" overlooked whereas others are deciphered. What would it not suggest, then, to be misplaced within the labyrinth, with out a manner via its never-ending signifying turns? via no longer forging a path of any kind—which is to claim, through postponing the method of discrimination among signifying and nonsignifying styles upon which interpreting as such depends—Nichol might approximate Saussure's "perplexity" approximately Latin texts, the aimless second during which significant language has been beaten via the clean infinity of the sum of its attainable significations. Captured by way of the unrestrained way over the linguistic fabric ahead of feel could be made up of it, Nichol might in impression give up to the tremendous thoughtlessness hidden in the maze's middle. Saussure do not have it. yet as i've got prompt, in his personal method neither will Nichol, for all his emphasis at the disseminative power of language. confronted with what Godzich correctly describes as "a heterogeneous, non-reductive box which [did] ... now not lend itself to the conceptualization of a model,"27 Saussure looks to have fled to the comforting rationality of linguistics. As de guy indicates, the swerve in his learn occupation "supports the idea of an apprehension glimpsed" (HI, 37). To the level that Saussure's personal "maze of messages" escapes conceptualization, it really is unrecognizable as writing, that is one of many connotations of de Man's unusual comment that it "is by no means convinced that language is in any experience human. " What starts as play for Nichol, the "comic stripping of the naked phrase," likewise results in a cryptically grim disclosure: "the soreness contained in the language speaks. " What the character of this soreness can be is hard to articulate since it is, in its bareness, the place the poem as readable language "begins," the maze sooner than a "way" via it's been Monstrosity, Illegibility, Denegation fifty three selected. yet Nichol's hypogrammatism offers it a muted voice, insofar because the poet's frolic between attainable readings at each element bears the hint of a deeper undecidability: the labyrinthine prospect of a really infinitized loose play that's irreducible to and unregulated by way of any method of signification. during this insupportable realm the semiotic situation of the signal is eclipsed and language rendered right into a type of textual blur or smudge that extinguishes realizing. To event language in its radical bareness is itself incomprehensible, for, as de guy writes, "We could then have witnessed ... the undoing of cognition and its substitute through the uncontrollable energy of the letter as inscription" (RT, 37). De Man's element is that cognition, clarity, and conceptualization are continually already the refusal of this monstrously unsettling danger. Insofar as "linguistic unfastened play" may be acknowledged to explain TheMartyrologys hypogrammatism, it too is necessarily an expression of the disavowal of the "letter as inscription" since it restricts itself to destabilizing the way yet no longer the very fact of language's signifying functionality.
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