By Dylan Sawyer (auth.)
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Additional resources for Lyotard, Literature and the Trauma of the differend
Nonetheless, as I will show in my examinations of the ‘literary differend’, even this ‘neutralisation’ is able to be rendered ‘positively’, and so while the unpresentable can never be presented ‘in’ literature I believe that it can be intuited to exist ‘beyond’ and ‘through’ it if its lexis is shown to be sufficiently affected. Again, while Lyotard generally views literature (or any discourse) as incapable of sustaining that which is unable to be phrased, I believe that this very incapability can be harnessed as a sign of strength rather than as a signal for despair.
Which align the phrase event with its specific – and necessarily exclusive – requirements. The presentation of a phrase event can never be wholly exhausted by a specific phrase regime as all are inescapably heterogeneous and incommensurable with each other, the constellations they chart serving to simultaneously unveil expanses unseen. The heterogeneity among phrase regimens is nevertheless brought under accord through their subservience to a genre and is shaped and driven by that particular genre’s defining end or purpose.
HJ, 47) The philosopher here appears to announce that literature is ultimately only capable of providing a ‘negative witness’ to the unpresentable, despite the referenced writers being understood by the philosopher to be postmodern and so capable of presenting the unpresentable, an act that arguably transforms negativity into a positive act. It is unclear whether Lyotard here simply lapses into a contradiction or whether he believes that ultimately even postmodern attempts to present the differend are fated to bear merely a ‘negative witness’.
Lyotard, Literature and the Trauma of the differend by Dylan Sawyer (auth.)