"Certain Vowel Sounds": Beckett's Not I and Lacanian phonemics

Hall, Mark Webster (2013) "Certain Vowel Sounds": Beckett's Not I and Lacanian phonemics. Colloquy, 25: 21-39.

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Author Hall, Mark Webster
Title "Certain Vowel Sounds": Beckett's Not I and Lacanian phonemics
Formatted title
“Certain Vowel Sounds”: Beckett’s Not I and Lacanian phonemics
Journal name Colloquy
ISSN 1325-9490
Publication date 2013-08
Sub-type Article (original research)
Open Access Status File (Publisher version)
Issue 25
Start page 21
End page 39
Total pages 19
Place of publication Melbourne, VIC, Australia
Publisher Centre for Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies, Monash University
Collection year 2014
Language eng
Formatted abstract
...Theories of language and subjectivity that build upon structuralist foundations in linguistics can be examined very suggestively in terms of this principled de-emphasis upon physical speech sound and origin. In this paper I would like to interrogate such a theory (that of the Lacanian "science of the subject") by deploying it in a reading of a dramatic text that constitutes a strong thematisation of precisely those local, fleshly mechanics of speech that the Saussurean account has relegated to being of secondary linguistic importance. That text is Samuel Beckett‘s Not I. In its dramatisation of a crisis of subjectivity, Beckett‘s play foregrounds the organs of speech working frantically to constitute the subject in language; to that extent the text lingers with striking intensity at the coalface of acoustic production. Given this, Not I encourages critical inspection of that site associated with Mladen Dolar‘s identification of "the voice [which] appears as the link which ties the signifier to the body [and which] indicates that the signifier, however purely logical and differential, must have a point of origin and emission in the body." By focusing on Not I‘s sustained disclosure of speech‘s being physically formed in the production of a subjectivity, I wish to explore the extent to which the vocal body (i.e. phonic utterance together with speech apparatus) contributes to linguistic meaningfulness and dramatised social being...
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Communication and Arts Publications
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Created: Tue, 15 Oct 2013, 15:25:00 EST by Ms Stormy Wehi on behalf of School of Communication and Arts