African Literature, Modernism, and the Problem of Political Subjectivity

African Literature, Modernism, and the Problem of Political Subjectivity POLITICAL SUBJECTS IN GADDIS AND PEPETELA mean that the relationship between consciousness and the world is absolutely representational. The gap between "subject" and "object" is indeed absolute from the perspective of representation, but in fact both concepts emerge from the problem of representation. Since "subject" and "object" are concepts, they both already belong to the subject. The "thing-in-itself," directly opposed to the thingfor-consciousness, is itself directly posited as such by consciousness; thus the thing-in-itself is just as much a thing-for-consciousness as is the thing-forconsciousness. There could be nothing more intimate, then, than (this aspect of) the relationship between subject and object-but this relationship is not representation strictly speaking. Rather, the subject has already intervened in the object by making it available for representation, by construing it as object, bifurcating it between (merely subjective) representation and unreachable thing-initself-and has created itself as subject in the same stroke. What appeared, then, to be the critical discovery of an irreducible gap between subject and object turns out to be, in its essence, a crossing of that very gap, even while the critical apparatus that this discovery directs against the problem of representation remains valid for that limited case. To put it http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Novel: A Forum on Fiction Duke University Press

African Literature, Modernism, and the Problem of Political Subjectivity

Novel: A Forum on Fiction, Volume 41 (2-3) – Jun 1, 2008

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright 2008 by Novel, Inc.
ISSN
0029-5132
eISSN
1945-8509
DOI
10.1215/ddnov.041020264
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

POLITICAL SUBJECTS IN GADDIS AND PEPETELA mean that the relationship between consciousness and the world is absolutely representational. The gap between "subject" and "object" is indeed absolute from the perspective of representation, but in fact both concepts emerge from the problem of representation. Since "subject" and "object" are concepts, they both already belong to the subject. The "thing-in-itself," directly opposed to the thingfor-consciousness, is itself directly posited as such by consciousness; thus the thing-in-itself is just as much a thing-for-consciousness as is the thing-forconsciousness. There could be nothing more intimate, then, than (this aspect of) the relationship between subject and object-but this relationship is not representation strictly speaking. Rather, the subject has already intervened in the object by making it available for representation, by construing it as object, bifurcating it between (merely subjective) representation and unreachable thing-initself-and has created itself as subject in the same stroke. What appeared, then, to be the critical discovery of an irreducible gap between subject and object turns out to be, in its essence, a crossing of that very gap, even while the critical apparatus that this discovery directs against the problem of representation remains valid for that limited case. To put it

Journal

Novel: A Forum on FictionDuke University Press

Published: Jun 1, 2008

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