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ERIC Number: EJ982540
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Sep
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0010-0994
J. Hillis Miller's Virtual Reality of Reading
Fosso, Kurt; Harp, Jerry
College English, v75 n1 p79-94 Sep 2012
We set out to investigate Miller's curious assertion--curious for a deconstructionist committed to a critique of the old metaphysics of presence--that literary works preexist their being written down. We find a basis for this sense of the preexistence of the literary work in Miller's insights about the performative dynamics of reading and writing. We thus examine Miller's intuition about the preexistence of the literary text in terms of language as a shifting structure that interpenetrates and always exceeds the writer's and the readers' minds, of the meta-awareness implicit in the dependence of the mimetic on self-referentiality, and of the relationship between the literary realm of the virtual and Derrida's idea of the "future anterior". As Miller's insights into the performative act of reading disclose, the literary work exists among all of its possibilities of negotiation, interpretation, conjuration, and understanding. The intuition of the literary work's preexistence thus relates to a sense of actuality as always a matter of interpretation and negotiation, rather than as simply a collection of facts. (Contains 7 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A