Salome and the dance of writing

by Françoise Meltzer.
Salome and the dance of writing
Françoise Meltzer.
University of Chicago Press
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Last Updated:
August 2nd, 2011

How does literature imagine its own powers of representation? Françoise Meltzer attempts to answer this question by looking at how the portrait—the painted portrait, framed—appears in various literary texts. Alien to the verbal system of the text yet mimetic of the gesture of writing, the textual portrait becomes a telling measure of literature's views on itself, on the politics of representation, and on the power of writing.

Meltzer's readings of textual portraits—in the Gospel writers and Huysmans, Virgil and Stendhal, the Old Testament and Apuleius, Hawthorne and Poe, Kafka and Rousseau, Walter Scott and Mme de Lafayette—reveal an interplay of control and subversion: writing attempts to veil the visual and to erase the sensual in favor of "meaning," while portraiture, with its claims to bringing the natural object to "life," resists and eludes such control. Meltzer shows how this tension is indicative of a politics of repression and subversion intrinsic to the very act of representation. Throughout, she raises and illuminates fascinating issues: about the relation of flattery to caricature, the nature of the uncanny, the relation of representation to memory and history, the narcissistic character of representation, and the interdependency of representation and power.

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AlibrisVery good A copy that has been read, but remains in excellent condition. Pages are intact and are not marred by notes or highlighting, but may contain a neat previous owner name. The spine remains undamaged. At ThriftBooks, our motto is: Read More, Spend Less.US$ 2.97 US$ 3.50US$ 6.47
AlibrisVery Good 0226519716 1987; 226 Pages; Red cloth covered boards; Comes with glossy black illustrated paper jacket; Wear on spine and edges from shelving; 8vo-over 7 3/4" to 9 3/4" tall; interior clean and unmarked.US$ 8.10 US$ 3.50US$ 11.60
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