Alien Positions

I here repeat a gesture of acknowledgement. I thank Marie-Michelle Strah for the exchange of words and ideas, via e-mail, via post and in person. This snippet (without diacritical marks) gives you a small impression of what thinking in two languages does to the modalities of the process of expressing what one is thinking about.

Date: Mon, 16 May 1994 14:32:31 -0400 (EDT)
In-Reply-To: from "Marie-Michelle Strah" at May 15, 94 07:24:16 pm

Tu est des plus lucides. Tu me dis :

le partage sensoriel que tu travailles n'est ni accessoire ni etranger a la problematique de la texto-subjectivite, mais une partie intrinseque de toute meditation hermeneutico/semiologique, une _vocation_, quoi.

et cela me rejouit. Le francais semble beaucoup plus elegant [...] Tu t'imagines l'anglais?

the sensory division upon which you are working is to be situated neither in an accessory nor alien position in relation to the text-subjectivity problematic. on the contrary it is an intrinsic part of any hermeneutiqe or semiotic meditation, a *vocation* in other words.
And in November 1994, I was writing to her in Paris a message that was sent with the following header: "Subject: high abstraction".
while in Paris at some cafe you might have fun with what i am struggling with:

the specularity of the subject in relation to continuity and reversibility arising out of the nature/culture split mapped onto opposed (male-female) genders

"women make babies; men, culture" it is what Donna Haraway calls a "regulatory fiction"

somehow i have managed to state that reading the gendered nature/culture split back into theorizing about ideology one can make the trivial claim that Althusser's specular subject is a compensation mechanism for the uncertainty of paternity....[big deal]

the more interesting claim is that in reading an ideological construct (gendered nature-culture dichotomy) back into theorizing about ideology one can also claim that reproduction as formulated in Western discourse implies a relation between continuity and reversibility

i am lost at this point. maybe spinning off into verbiage but somehow i keep coming back obsessively to some kind of relation between continuity and reversibility. does this twig with anything you've read. i know that reversibility is linked to non-newtonian physics and the mathematics of catastrophe theory. reversibility is of course connected with dyads and this may be my hook up with reproduction and continuity. the anthropological literature provides cases where theories of reproduction allow for multiple genitors. i have to unpack the notion of reversibility, any ideas even the most silly might unravel why this pair "continuity and reversibility" is so attractive to my writing/thinking self
There is no underestimating the importance of interlocutors, especially those willing to be indulgent in the face of raw ramblings.

And so for day 875