A Different Kind of Magic: Revisioning the Figure of the Witch


Textes et Genres

2011, vol. 4, pp.447-157

Départements : Langues et Cultures

A Universal Hubbub Wild of Stunning Sounds and Voices all Confused: The Genesis and Degeneration of Speech in Agamben's Infancy and History and Milton's Paradise Lost



2011, vol. 17, pp.94-110

Départements : Langues et Cultures

In Infancy and History, Giorgio Agamben describes infancy as a leap across the divide which seperates phone from logos, or voice from discourse. Language is made possible by this very division, a fracture that man himself introduces as he emerges from infancy to become the speaking subject. Infancy thus represents the original dimension of humanity. A similar conception of infancy lies at the heart of John Milton’s Paradise Lost. But where Agamben theorizes on the origins of language, Milton describes the degeneration of voice and discourse. With Satan’s plunge into chaos, he fathoms the destruction of the very foundations of human language and culture, an utter breakdown of the logos into animal noise and affect

Onomaturgy vs. Onomastics: An Introduction to the Namecraft of Ursula K. Le Guin


Names: A Journal of Onomastics

septembre 2011, vol. 59, n°3, pp.129-138

Départements : Langues et Cultures

Mots clés : Ursula k. Le Guin, Onomaturgy, Literary onomastics, Aesthetics of invented names, Names in science fiction and fantasy

Where literary onomastics focuses on names in the context of a narrative, literary onomaturgy focuses on ensembles of names that share common features in their construction, over and beyond the texts in which the individual names appear. This approach gives serious consideration to wordplay and free association that other critical perspectives would treat as irrelevant, yet maintains methodological rigor thanks to its model of name creation. It furthermore treats semantic content as an element of construction, on a par with sound and form, that can be displaced from one name to another. While many of these elements get woven into the narratives in which the names appear, others get left out of the texts, but reappear in the fabrication of other names. In Le Guin's namecraft these internominal relationships cut across different texts and imaginary worlds, are open to great variety, and possess aesthetic properties that make the ensembles worthy of study and admiration on their own merits