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experience. Words, precisely because they are detached from the senses, are capable of evoking one admittedly small component of experience - namely, the thought we experience while writing, which is experienced again by another, while reading. Impatient with mere textual knowledge, theorists nowadays look to sound, image, and the human body itself as sources of affect - all the more powerful because present, or at least accessible, in new media. But as Coetzee's lover Julia confirms, the avoidance of discourse (the slow, mostly verbal "foreplay"), and the favoring of immediate and direct sensual experience can actually limit the sensual imagination. It is a kind of sexual autism, in Julia's word; a race for eunuchs, as Nietzsche puts it in his usual, tactful way. For a eunuch, as for John with his over-theorized erotic image, one woman is as good as another. Each woman is for him, in effect, merely a woman, the woman-in-itself, the eternally unapproachable, and so what drives him is something indifferent, so long as love-making itself remains splendidly "objective" and, of course protected precisely by the sort of people who could never make love, or history, themselves. And since the eternally feminine will never draw the affective theorist upward, he then pulls her down to himself and assumes, since he is neutered, that history is also neutral. However, so that people do not think that I am serious in comparing history with the eternally feminine, I wish to express myself much more clearly: I consider that history is the opposite of the eternally masculine, but for those who theorize the living feminine body as itself a kind of writing, a vessel of narratives, then sexuality as such must be quite unimportant. Either way, when presenting writing as a sensuous affect, such people are themselves neither male nor female; they are not something common to both; nor are they authors of narratives that can only be understood exclusively by brothers or sisters of the

New Media  

This remix essay by Joe Tabbi is in response to Mark Amerika's remixthebook. Tabbi writes: "This essay is also out of touch with the times b...

New Media  

This remix essay by Joe Tabbi is in response to Mark Amerika's remixthebook. Tabbi writes: "This essay is also out of touch with the times b...

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