chapter  6
21 Pages

Action and art

The challenge presented by the Discursive Condition to modernity has profound implications not only for the assumptions about identity, time, causality, and language already discussed, but also for assumptions about politics and about the sources of creative change. To those who assume that our current and largely unexamined assumptions are and always have been the only possible ones with regard to such fundamental issues, the changes involved can seem profoundly negative. Even acknowledging the profundity of the cultural change involved, where does anyone start considering how to find or forge new tools of thought? How does one find new formulation for events or actions that are conceived as enunciation and not as phenomena of a billiard-ball universe with its objectivities and causalities? What kind of definitions are possible when every meaning and value is to be understood negatively through its relation to everything else in its semiological (operating) system? In the Discursive Condition it is impossible not to “mess with Mr. In-Between” as the Mercer lyric of the 1940s puts it, because, as Cixous has said, that “in-between” is precisely the site of “writing,” in other words, the site of enunication.