as I have been with this century's Western notions of adversarial aesthetics,
I continue to have difficulty in accommodating my latest articulation
of the narrative "problem"-- i.e., according to Teresa De Lauretis's conflation
of narrativity itself with the Oedipus complex, whereby woman's position
is constantly reinstated for the consummation or frustration of male desire.
The difficulty lies in accommodating this with a conviction that it is
of the utmost urgency that women's voices, experience, and consciousness--at
whatever stage--be expressed in all their multiplicity and heterogeneity,
and in as many formats and styles--narrative or not. In relation to the
various notions of an avant-garde, this latter view, in its emphasis on
voicing what has previously gone unheard, gives priority to unmasking
and reassessing social relations, rather than overturning previously validated
aesthetic positions. My personal accommodation becomes more feasible when
cast in terms of difference rather than opposition, and when the question
is asked: "Which strategies bring women together in recognition of their
common and different economic and sexual oppressions and which strategies
do not?" The creation of oppositional categories begs this question."
from "Thoughts on
Women's Cinema: Eating Words, Voicing Struggles," in Blasted Allegories,
An Anthology of Writings by Contemporary Artists.
The New Museum
of Contemporary Art, New York, New York.
"...the book and
the projector as machines delivering the artist's minds to their viewer/reader;
the page and the screen as sites where these interactions occur; and the
gallery/theatre as the threshold space inside and outside."
--from Gallery statement
by Trinh T. Minh-ha and Lynn Marie Kirby in their collaborative
installation, "nothing but ways", presented at the Yerba Buena
Arts Center in August of 1999, San Francisco.
of a critic like Perloff, however, are more interesting when treated like
extended essays which are trying to do something, rather than just say
something. In other words, Perloff's work can be better understood if
it is read the way she reads poetry -- as an enactment in language of
a particular aesthetic and ideological stance in which the question of
how language is employed matters more than 'what is being said.' "
-- David Zauhar
"Perloff in the Nineties", electronic book review9 <www.altx.com/ebr/>