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Zoo-logics: questions of analysis in a film by Peter Greenaway

Wills, D. and McHoul, A. (2005) Zoo-logics: questions of analysis in a film by Peter Greenaway. Textual Practice, 5 (1). pp. 7-20.

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The forms of texts that we might call, for want of a better word, postmodern, are not unfamiliar to us. We can immediately call to mind Joyce, the nouveau roman, so-called metafiction, Pynchon, De Lillo and so on. And we can argue about the applicability of those examples with respect to a category that means little for us anyway. Then we can imagine or invoke forms of analysis that have been applied inter alia to those texts; for example, the Barthesian, the Genettian, the Derridean, etc. They are not mysteries. But such analyses, more and more, are treating the texts they treat not just as objects for analysis, but as means to investigate the terms of that analysis itself, and indeed of analysis in general. The tendency starts to some extent with Genette, but becomes most explicit in the work of Kristeva, Barthes, and of course Derrida. All that has been oftrepeated. And of course, it did not require a category like ‘postmodern fiction’ to elicit such inquiries into analysis; rather they are part and parcel of analysis itself, to the extent that any analysis is required to establish its own terms, whether or not it acknowledges such a task as an exercise in self-reflexivity.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Social Sciences and Humanities
Publisher: Routledge
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