By Sande Cohen
Booklet through Cohen, Sande
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16 What Is Criticism For? In sum, the constancy of academic writing is calibrated with processes in which extremes, the highs and lows of experience, are edited into a domesticated, tamed thought. One does not have to quote Nietzsche or Derrida to make this point; the Pink Floyd song (1975) "Wish You Were Here," with its refrain about one's ability to tell heaven from hell, mocks one's ability to tell (separate) "telling" and "told" once the linguistically constructed "self" is within, contained, and rhetoricized to the social.
Research as a turning over, a "finding" of what is significant, that which stands out and illumines, where something valuable is released from confinement, is calibrated with reading unfamiliar documents from unfamiliar times and places, whose social actant is the attentive scholar. This requires a cut within the division of thinking, between interpretation (what is oversaid) and formalization (objects as pieces of structures) (the poles, then, being tradition and constitutive model building, as A.
What Is Criticism For? ), or occupy a "distant and close" (Deleuze) articulation of mediation, or manage to slip in subjective significations among the sedentary massification of discourse. "36 Without Hegel The academic "post" — as in being posted to the scene — of convincing others to take seriously the contradictions and constructions of the existing players and the corresponding imaginary and symbolic levels is of a similar effect-spell of "melancholy haphazardness," which Hannah Arendt ladeled over the theory of history.