I see this morning that the Most Reverend Charles J. Chaput, Archbishop of Denver Colorado, has pronounced it a sin to vote for John Kerry. It is also a sin that his Eminence feels must be confessed before Catholics can recieve Communion.
This makes my blood boil! Is this not the 21st Century? Are we to put Catholics under Interdict for voting against war, the death penalty, and the reduction of government aid to the poor? Let his Eminence first fully explain to me how he and his brother Bishops let something come to pass that now requires the statement "proceeds will not be used to settle sexual abuse litigation" to be included with the Bishops Appeal notices I get in the mail... let him explain that and what his penance has been before he can tell me that I must confess my vote for someone other than George Bush as a sin.
In other news, I see that Jacques Derrida passed away. I have never really deconstructed a damn thing, but I spent nine years as a graduate student on a campus that seemed otherwise largely devoted to the idea. Speaking as someone with that experience, I can say that I find it important that Derrida's phrase "il n'y a pas de hors-texte" (there is no outside text) underlines that the act of reading is inherently an act of translation. To deconstruct text is therefore to embrace the relativistic nature of the written word.
At the same time, deconstruction and its attendant relativism worries me. Literature is not merely a puzzle that must be decoded in order to be understood. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, and sometimes an exoteric meaning is the meaning of the text. With the politically correct tendency to worship deconstruction, I fear that this overt embrace of relativism may cause some minds to forget that there are values worth holding on to.
On a completely different level, I think that early 90's Internet writer RICHH summed all this up in this little essay:
HAIR CLUB FOR MEN VS POSTMODERN FICTION AND CRITICISM
HAIR CLUB FOR MEN POSTMODERN FICTION
Whether wet right out of the Post-structuralist thought
shower, or blow-dried, it feels about as natural as
looks and feels natural, just circumcising (or
like a part of you. mastectomizing) oneself
with a rusty can.
"Hair Club's new polyfuse Derrida will often coin
method literally fuses new words "portmanteau",
top-quality human hair "pharmakon", "differance"
to your own hair." when the old ones aren't
doing what he wants them to.
This is a characteristic
Derrida move and is certainly
nothing to lose hair over.
POSTMODERN FICTION HAIR CLUB FOR MEN
Feminists have borrowed from post- "Even when you feel it, feel
structuralism the conviction that around the perimeter of your
reality is inherently unstable and head, you really cannot feel
the complementary claim that anything in your hair."
language offers the only partial
truth of it that we may hope to
know--and they have expanded the
attack on logocentrism into an
attack on "phallocentrism". Thus
the illusion that the human mind can
identify and understand an
independent reality becomes a
specifically male pretension to
intellectual domination, which must
inevitably end in the
marginalization and obliteration
of Woman, and all Western thought
becomes inherently "phallocentric".
One also notices in many of
Derrida's writings that he will use
what he writes in the margins to
comment on the body.
Derrida will often use a word and That guy from "Eraserhead"
immediately cross it out to achieve had really bitchin' hair.
a desired effect, a technique he
calls "sous rasure", meaning
HAIR CLUB FOR MEN POSTMODERN FICTION
"It really gave me more ways to Deconstruction is very
be able to do my hair, and I can do fashionable. Especially
it in more of a nineties fashion." in France (snicker, snicker),
and at Yale (double snicker).
A new healthy head of hair can Postmodernism can dash
renew confidence and improve self- what little self-esteem
esteem. It may also bring out the you may have to rubble
best of who you are. as you find yourself
struggling to grasp the
concept of the 'trace'.
Make sure you call Hair Club's The Tel Quel group has no
toll-free number to make sure you 800 number but, to be fair,
receive their new brochure<800-274- you can usually find yourself
4133>. it's loaded with information a post-modernist on most any
so you can make the right choice for 900 line.
yourself. And by the way, Sy is not
only the hair club president, he's
also a client.
Sy Sperling boasts a lovely, full Foucault was bald. DAMN BALD!
head of hair.
A nice head of hair can add character. The writers, of the so-called
'nouveau roman', or 'new novel'
(Robbes-Grillet et al) pride
themselves on eschewing
traditional devices of
narrative, such as plot,
setting and characters.
on 2004-10-12 at 11:54 a.m.
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