By Erika Ostrovsky
From the production of a neuter pronoun in her earliest paintings, L’Opoponax, to the confusion of genres in her most up-to-date fiction, Virgile, non, Monique Wittig makes use of literary subversion and invention to complete what Erika Ostrovsky effectively defines as renversement, the annihilation of latest literary canons and the construction of hugely cutting edge constructs. Erika Ostrovsky explores these points of Wittig’s paintings that top illustrate her literary technique. one of the numerous progressive units that Wittig makes use of to accomplish renversement are the feminization of masculine gender names, the reorganization of delusion styles, and the alternative of conventional punctuation along with her personal approach of grammatical emphasis and separation. it's the unforeseen volume and caliber of such literary units that make examining Monique Wittig’s fiction a clean and lucrative adventure. Such literary units have earned Wittig the acclaim of her critics and peers—Marguerite Duras, Mary McCarthy, Alain Robbe-Grillet, Nathalie Sarraute, and Claude Simon, to call a few. While examining the intrinsic price of every of Wittig’s fictions individually, Erika Ostrovsky lines the revolutionary improvement of Wittig’s significant literary units as they seem and reappear in her fictions. Ostrovsky keeps that the seeds of these thoughts that seem in Wittig’s most modern texts are available way back to L’Opoponax. This facts of development helps Ostrovsky’s thought that clues to Wittig’s destiny endeavors are available in her prior.
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Extra resources for A Constant Journey: The Fiction of Monique Wittig (Crosscurrents Modern Critiques)
Only then is one able to work words into a form. (T, 47) The meaning of a finished work of fiction, she goes on to state, derives directly from its form, that is, from the manner in which the writer has "worked words"by taking each word and "despoil[ing] it of its everyday meaning in order to work with words, on words" (T, 48). This is a striking pronouncement and one that illuminates an important aspect of Wittig's treatment of language in her fictions. It would be wrong, however, to regard her as believing that the writer's aim is primarily to demonstrate virtuosity in the handling of language or to strive for unintelligibility.
It is uninterrupted by paragraphs, breaks, or even punctuation marks that distinguish descriptive material from dialogue, what is told from what is said. " The continuity of the text also achieves a performative level, for it has, itself, duration and fluidity, an absence of boundaries or evidence of fragmentation. In this, it perfectly renders the child's perception of temporal flux as opposed to the adult's insistence on chronological measurement and segmentation. Although some critics attribute Wittig's treatment of fictional time primarily to a refusal of "phallocentric" linear concepts,13 it seems more appropriate here to consider her obvious preference for a use of temporal notions that characterize childhood and are in contrast to those of adults.
Page 5 Even more than this striking choice however, the nature of the text itself constitutes its principal originality. Incisive yet simple, it expresses Wittig's fundamental convictions in terms that, free of jargon or specialized terminology, are immediately accessible to a general audience. It thus clearly expresses the desire to destroy literary elitism, and it attacks the pervasive tendency to indulge in theoretical discourse (which could be considered a type of establishment). Instead, she chooses to appeal to the imaginative potential of her listeners.