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The Critical Difference : Essays in the Contemporary Rhetoric of Reading - Barbara Johnson

The Critical Difference

Essays in the Contemporary Rhetoric of Reading

Paperback Published: 19th March 1985
ISBN: 9780801827280
Number Of Pages: 168
For Ages: 22+ years old

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Barbara Johnson investigates the significant and illuminating ways in which both literature and criticism are "critically different" from what they purport to be. Her subtle and provocative studies of Balzac, Mallarme, Baudelaire, Apollinaire, Melville, Poe, Barthes, Lacan, Austin, and Derrida take a refreshing new approach to the fundamental questions of meaning, interpretation, and the relationship between literature and criticism. In each of seven essays, a clear, precise, and detailed reading of the rhetoric of one or more literary or critical works reveals the text's fundamental discrepancies, ambiguities, and contradictions. If rhetoric is seen as language's capacity to differ from literal statement, and if "to differ" can also mean "to disagree, " then the reading of the rhetoric of literature and theory here is an attempt to capture the logic of a text's own disagreement with itself.

When it is done well, deconstructive criticism can be a pleasure to read, as it is in the case of Barbara Johnson. Her discussions of the reading process... are patient, ingenious, and persuasive. -- Robert Scholes * Yale Review * When it is done well, deconstructive criticism can be a pleasure to read, as it is in the case of Barbara Johnson. Her discussions of the reading process... are patient, ingenious, and persuasive. -- Robert Scholes * Yale Review *

Opening Remarksp. ix
Sexuality and Differencep. 1
The Critical Difference: BartheS/BalZacp. 3
Allegory's Trip-Tease: The White Waterlilyp. 13
Poetry and Differencep. 21
Poetry and Its Double: Two Invitations au voyagep. 23
Poetry and Performative Language: Mallarme and Austinp. 52
Poetry and Syntax: What the Gypsy Knewp. 67
Difference in the Actp. 77
Melville's Fist: The Execution of Billy Buddp. 79
The Frame of Reference: Poe, Lacan, Derridap. 110
Notesp. 147
Indexp. 155
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780801827280
ISBN-10: 0801827280
Audience: General
For Ages: 22+ years old
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 168
Published: 19th March 1985
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2  x 1.27
Weight (kg): 0.23