By Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht
Philology--the discovery, modifying, and presentation of ancient texts--was as soon as a firmly proven self-discipline that shaped the center research for college students throughout quite a lot of linguistic and literary fields. even if philology departments are gradually disappearing from modern academic institutions, during this ebook Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht demonstrates that the issues, criteria, and strategies of philology stay as very important as ever. for 2 and a part millennia philologists have considered themselves because the modest heirs and curators of the textual past's so much wonderful sessions, gathering and enhancing textual content fragments, historicizing them and including statement, and eventually instructing them to modern readers. Gumbrecht argues for a go back to this practice instead to a regularly free-floating textual interpretation and to the more moderen redefinition of literary reviews as "cultural experiences, " which dangers a lack of highbrow concentration. any such go back to philological center routines must consider the hidden hope that has encouraged philology for the reason that its Hellenistic beginnings: the will to make the previous current back by way of embodying it.
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Additional info for The Powers of Philology: Dynamics of Textual Scholarship
The text of the laws occupies less than half the surface of each page, and it is surrounded by a commentary presented in smaller print and structured by a quite complex system of internal cross-references. The pages of the Siete Partidas thus convey a strong impression of fullness, and one could ask whether they do not bring to its materialization a structural principle (or perhaps a structural paradox) that may be constitutive for the genre of commentary. " This structural principle will normally either produce an impression of fullness (in the case of a well-balanced distribution between text and commentary, such as the Siete 37 Partidas, one might say an impression of plenitude) or, if the margins are not filled up, an impres3.
The concepts of supplementarity and différance, a word invented by Derrida that puns on the distinction between the linguistic insistence on the reiteration of difference and this principle of deferral, have been present on the humanities scene only since the advent of the deconstructive movement. " The closeness between the host text and the parasitical deconstructive practice reaches its unbeatable fulfillment in the deconstructive claim of their inseparability. In other words, the self-unfolding deconstructive discourse will always claim to be both the primary text and its deconstruction.
17 Do we have to understand the concept of an "irrefutable reading" as converging with the ideal of exclusively text-based evidence? I do not completely rule out the possibility that de Man is pushing for a degree of rationality and conclusiveness in textual analysis that would verge on something like a "textual logic," with its own rules and techniques. Nevertheless, I think it is more likely that 30 de Man used the phrase to mean a reading maximally aware of its own conditions and limitations, a reading, therefore, that would be irrefutable because it would make claims only in relation to specific parameters.