Thursday, February 13, 2014

Denotatively, Technically, Literally Spec. issue of Representations 125 (Winter 2014)

Edited by Elaine Freedgood and Cannon Schmitt

Denotative, literal, and technical language—apparently transparent and lacking in resonance—seems to be the opposite of literary language. A vigorous reading of the former, this special issue of Representations argues, should seek to realize its opacity and difficulty, its nonidentity with itself. To do so requires a revised and expanded sense of denotation, a rethinking of reference, the dereification of writing, an appeal to more expansive and heterodox archives, a historicism that forestalls or delays the figural, and more reading. Unlike recent literary critical attempts to restrict the field of reading, the practices sketched here seek to remove all limits to that which can be read, researched, and made into meaning. Contributors include Freedgood and Schmitt as well as Rachel Sagner Buurma, Margaret Cohen, Ian Duncan, and Laura Heffernan.