Jason Stuart (okokdomodomo) wrote in theorybookclub,
Jason Stuart

"Writing and Difference" p. 278

"Structure, Sign and Play" p. 278

"Nevertheless, up to the event which I wish to mark out and define, structure - or rather the structurality of structure - although it has always been at work, has always been neutralized or reduced, and this by a process of giving it a center or of referring it to a point of presence, a fixed origin."  

I reckon there are two ways of reading this sentence:  "Up to the "event," structure - as in the requirement of language, not what manifests itself when language actually appears - although it has a) always been at work & b) always been neutralized and reduced, and that reduction was the result of referring it back to a point of presence or origin."  


"Up to the 'event,' structure (or what is required of language before language may appear) had always been neutralized and reduced because it is always referred back to an origin, or a presence - even though structure was always there within language, [this presence was credited with conferring meaning]."

They're both pretty similar.  One's more of a sentence.  Obviously the presence/origin idea is a major thread of inquiry for this essay, but I want to consider the "structurality of structure" for a minute to see what he's saying here.  If we see structure as a property of language (a system of signs), then we see structure appearing where (and only where?) language appears, or vice versa - one way of putting it might be more correct than the other.  "Structurality" on the other hand seems to be the structure w/o signifying marks, the formal possibility (and I use that word b/c I'm not really keen on introducing terms such as "ghostly" or "skeletal" at this point) of language, the field to which language adheres.  The field is without value; this becomes important in the sentence following where JD introduces "play" as if structurality was productive - either of meaning (what I would consider a stable structure) or noise (what I would consider a basic instability).  

Whether meaning, noise, or meaningful noise, the presence/origin "neutralizes" the danger, or any instability.  It provides a sort of aura, a sense that identification of value is possible - is that created by the signs or the structurality?  Regardless this aura gets projected beyond the structure and assumes this image of the origin, a force behind meaning.  

How far do we want to go w/ the representation of structurality?  Can we distil it to a sign?  Doesn't that reiterate the process? 
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