In His Voice

Maurice Blanchot's Affair with the Neuter

David Appelbaum
eISBN-13: 9781438459813

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In His Voice considers the idea of the neuter in Maurice Blanchot's work, and seeks to work out through an exercise of literary impersonation, or ventriloquism, how and why Blanchot relied on this form. Neither active nor passive, the neuter expresses a kind of third voice beyond the command of the author, one that speaks paradoxically of what lies outside of speaking but nonetheless exerts an irrepressible influence on thought. The neuter is exilic, messianic, and fragmentary. Since it cannot be directly accounted for, Blanchot uses a number of indirect approaches—notably, myth—to announce the key elements of his view. Orpheus, Odysseus, and principally Narcissus figure his conception and elaborate the operation of giving voice. Through a distillation of Blanchot's narrative and critical texts—focusing on the late works, The Step Not Beyond, and The Writing of the Disaster—and through an emphasis on performance, In His Voice enacts the event of writing in search of how author's inscriptive reality appears in the world.

ISBNs 9781438459790, 1438459815, 9781438459813
Language English
Number of Pages 180