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Subject The "Other" of Discourse
Posted by Allison Lin
Posted on Sat Jan 16 19:46:28 1999
From IP h220.s104.ts.hinet.net  

The "Other" of Discourse
Craig Owens, in "The Discourse of Others: Feminists and Postmodernism," suggests that theories of postmodernism have tended either to neglect or to repress the voice of the Other. She criticized Lyotard's idea by saying that "women's insistence on difference and incommensurability" is an "instance" of postmodern thought (since Lyotard thinks that thinking by "means of opposition" and "a binary thought" does not fit the mode of postmodern knowledge. This is exactly what Owens wants to
argue -- "how can we conceive difference without opposition?" That means, here Owens wants to do a job of "reconceptualization" of the totalization of the Marxist Master narrative and psycho-analytic Master narrative -- both of them are founded on the base of phallologic thinking. In Marxist discourse, women historically considered to the spheres of "nonproductive" or "reproductive labour," are situated outside the society of "male labours." In Lacanian discourse, the problem of female fetishist is totally being excluded. In this light, Owens claims that "there's no single theoretical discourse which is going to offer an explanation for all forms of social relations or for every mode of political practice" and reconcepturalize the concept of Difference, to search for the recit perdu.


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