Tuesday, July 26, 2011

the law of genre

Breivik penned a 1,516-page manifesto titled 2083 - A European Declaration of Independence, under the pseudonym Andrew Berwick, which he emailed to 5,700 people hours before the attacks.[51] In the foreword, he refers to the attacks as "(...) sacrifices made in relation to the distribution of this book, the actual marketing operation". In the document he describes his background and discusses his political viewpoints.
I haven't read it but here is 2083 - A European Declaration of Independence.

Again:
In the foreword, he refers to the attacks as "(...) sacrifices made in relation to the distribution of this book, the actual marketing operation".
Dear God. Am I contributing to the success of massacre as a marketing operation? I don't know what to make of it at all. Suddenly Sean's The Ethics of Writing seems immediate rather than obscure.
Beginning amidst the tombs of the 'dead' God, and the crematoria at Auschwitz, this book, newly available in paperback, confronts the Nietzschean legacy through a Platonic focus. Plato argues in the Phaedrus that writing is dangerous because it can neither select its audience nor call upon its author to the rescue. Yet, he transgresses this ethical imperative in the Republic which has proved defenceless against use and abuse in the ideological foundation of totalitarian regimes. Burke goes on to analyse the dangerous games which Plato and Nietzsche played with posterity. At issue is how authors may protect against 'deviant readings' and assess 'the risk of writing'. Burke recommends an ethic of 'discursive containment'. The ethical question is the question of our times. Within critical theory, it has focused on the act of reading. This study reverses the terms of inquiry to analyse the ethical composition of the act of writing. What responsibility does an author bear for his legacy? Do 'catastrophic' misreadings of authors (e.g. Plato, Nietzsche) testify to authorial recklessness? These and other questions are the starting-point for a theory of authorial ethics which will be further developed in a forthcoming book on the interanimating thought of Emmanuel Levinas and Jacques Derrida. Continuing the mission of the 'returned author' begun in his pioneering book The Death and Return of the Author, Burke recommends the 'law of genre' as a contract drawn up between author and reader to establish ethical responsibility. Criticism, under this contract, becomes an ethical realm and realm of the ethical.
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