Does Literature Think?: Literature as Theory for an Antimythical Era
What is the process by which literature might provide us with access to knowledge, and what sort of knowledge might this be? The question is not simply whether literature thinks, but whether literature thinks theoretically whether it has a capacity, without the external aid of analytical methods that have determined Western philosophy and science since the Enlightenment, to theorize the conditions of the world from which it emerges and to which it addresses itself.
Suspicion about literature's access to knowledge is ancient, at least as old as Plato's notorious expulsion of the poets from the city in the Republic. With full awareness of this classical background and in dialogue with a broad range of twentieth-century thinkers, Gourgouris examines a range of literary texts, from Sophocles' Antigone to Don DeLillo's The Names, as he traces out his argument that literature possesses an intrinsic theoretical capacity to make sense of the nonpropositional.
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Adorno Antigone Antigone's Arcades Project arché argues argument autonomy becomes Benjamin Bouvard Bouvard and Pécuchet Bouvard et Pécuchet Brecht Carl Schmitt co-incidence conceptual condition constitutive core critique cult culture DeLillo desire Dialectic of Enlightenment dialectical domain Don DeLillo dream elements emerges encounter Enlightenment ethical experience fiction Flaubert force Genet Georges Sorel gesture Greek Hegel Heidegger Heidegger's historical history's ical imaginary imagination insofar institution interrogation intuition intuitive knowledge Jean Genet Kafka's knowledge Kreon language law's literary literature literature's logic Marxism matter means mode modern myth nature notion object Odysseus one's paradoxical Paris Pécuchet performative philosophy poetic poetry polis praxis precisely question radical reading reality recognize revolution revolutionary Schmitt sense signification singularity Sirens social social-imaginary society society's Sophocles Sorel specific standpoint terrain theater theatrical theoretical theory tion tragedy trans translation ture understanding University Press violence Walter Benjamin words writing