April 9, 2007

de Man Tells it Like it Is

de Man, ''Semilogy and Rhetoric'' -- Jerz EL312 (Literary Criticism)

"Literature as well as criticism -- the difference between them being delusive -- are condemned (or privileged to be forever the most rigorous and, consequently, the most unreliable language in terms of which man names and modifies himself" (de Man 373)

This criticism was very confusing at first, (which apparantly is a good thing), but now there is a greater understanding on the point of signifiers, rather than facts, constituting a better comprehension of the meaning of a piece of literature. Understanding the difference between what a word can mean, and how a word can provide meaning is a big difference according to de Man. And gaining that comprehension will not necessarily provide an answer, but the semiotics will guide the reader into a signifier that will potentially unlock a certain meaning. Also, another interesting point de Man makes is the emphasis of metaphors being a huge signifier, and through that, can actually open up meaning, just as a fact helps a science student understand meaning, or a standard solution to a problem. Overall, de Man's theory was very interesting, and brought up very valid points, and I am looking forward to Karissa's presentation on de Man.

Posted by The Gentle Giant at April 9, 2007 8:31 PM

Unlike you, I share a genuine distaste for both de Man and being shot in the knee. I doubt either could ever provide a reasonable conclusion.

Posted by: Dave Moio at April 12, 2007 5:35 PM
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