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Glyh F (re) Teequer Dain ‘THE LAW OF GENRE Genes Ane Nor w be mite Trepest gontes ae not tobe med. wil nt mie thers [Now suppose [let these utterances resonate ll by themeles Suppooe: 1 abandon thors to their fate, 1 got free thor random ‘ewalien and far them over to my audlence—or rather, 1 Your bdione, to your auditory grap, to whatever mobllty Uy retain and sou bestow upon them to engender effects of all Kinds without my ‘having wo stand tehind them ‘Trmerly sid, and then repeated: gonres are no tobe mixes 1 wil (As Jong as I release these wterances (which oles might call spect acs) in 8 form yet scarcely determined, given the open context fut of which T have just let them be grasped from "my" language—ae Tong ab T do tis, you may find It diet o choose among several Inerpretative options. They are leglon, as 1 could demonstrate. They form’ ap open ‘ad ewentally unprediciable series. But you ay be tempted by least to types of adlence, two modes of interpretation, fn if You prefer to plve these words more ofa chance, then You 23) be tempted by two diferent genres of hypetess. Which ones? (On the ane hind, could be a matter of a fragmentary discourse howe jeoposiione woud be ofthe deseiptie,contative, ad mete fenre. In ruch a cae, I would have named operation which cn Aste of "genres are not to be mited” I would have designated this 203 ‘peration in 2 neutal fashion without evaluating it, without recom ‘ending oF advising against I, ceamly without Binding anyone 0 I ‘Witout claming to lay down the law or to make this an act of law, 1 merely would have summoned up, na fragmentary utterance, the sence of practice, pact or event, ax You wish which bx what some times happens when we revert «o “gontes are not to be mined” With reference to the same case, and ta hypothesis of te same type, same Iode, sume gonse—-or same order. when Isl" wil not mtr genres, you may have discemed a foreshadowing deseipdon—T am not sing 2 presipion the descriptive designation telling In advance What ‘ul tranepte, predicting fen the conrative mode or gene, Lei wll Iappen this, I wil not mix genres. The futore tense describes, the, what wl suey take place, you yourselves can judges but for my ptt dose not consist @ commitment. 1am not making 3ou 3 Promise here, nor am I iscng moe? an order or mvoking the autor- Ity of some law to which 1 arm cele to rub myelin th case, the fotare tense doer ot act the time of = performative spech set of promising or orcening Spe Tt another hpothenis, another type of audience, and anaiher Anverprotation would have been less Teptinate, “Genres are not 12 ‘bo minad” could stk you as sharp order. You might have heard it resound the elipdcal but all the more authodtavian summons (0 a Taw of "io" or “do ot” which, as everyone knows ocupie the concep oF constitutes the value of gewe. Av soon as the word “gene” is Scunded, as soon ait x heard, at soon as one attempts to conclve i, limit drawn. And when mit i establishes, norms and inerdie fone are not fr behind. “Do,”"Do not” ss gente” the word "gente fhe figure, the voce or the Law of genre. And this can be ald of genre Inall gente, bo ita question of a genece ora geneal determination of what one calle “nature” or physi (for example, a Hologeal genre feneral), or be its questlon of 4 ypology designated as non nator nd depending on Ins or orders which were once eld to be oprored to phyts aecordng to thee vals sesclted with tckne, chess, noms (for example, an arise, poste or Ierary genre). But the whole enigma of gene springs Perhaps most closely from within dis limit etween the two genres of genre whic, nlther separable nor Insepe ‘able, form an odd covpl of one without theater in which each evenly serves the other a ceaton t appear Sn the figure of the other, sul ancously and Indscomby saying "T” and “wo,” me the genre, we dente, without It bung possible to chink that the "Tis species of {he genre “we.” For who would have ux believe that we, we Iwo foe ‘example, would form a pete or belong fo one? Thus ab oan a6 genre ‘mounces Isl one must respect norm, one must noe essa Tne 208 Denia of demarcation, one snus tot risk spurs, anomaly oF monstosty. ‘Kono goes in ll cre, whether not tht law of gee be intel fred av a detenninstion or peshape oven ab 2 destination of physi, ind regardless of the welsh or range imputed to physs 1 genge Is ‘whe iio ft supposed to be what Its destined to be by virtue ofits tele, then “genres are not to be mixed, one should not mix {fonmesone owes ito oneal sotto get mined up in mlsing gente. OF, fore rigorously, gener sbould ot termix, And if should happen that they do ntrmin, by acident o through tenspreson, by mea for through a Laer, then his should confi, since, afterall we ate Sheaking of “nnong” the eaeenal pert of thee identity. Ths purty felons to the tpldl axiom, fea law of the la of gense, whether fr notte law i as ope fens Jstie in aaying, "natural" This norma {he postion snd thie evaluadon age scribed and prescribed even at the thresold of the “thing itll” Af something of the genre “genre” fan be so named, And so i follows that you might have take the Second sentence inthe Set person“ wll not mix genres" as 2 vow tf sbedence. av 2 docile responds tothe innction emansing fom the law of gene. In place of = constaive desepon, you would then Ins pole, an oath, you would grasp the following respectful com trifment. promise you that Iwill not mie genes, and, through this cto pledging utter falthfulnes t my commitment, 1 il be flu fo the law of gene, lnc, by Rts very natoe, the law invites and com Ins me ia advance not to min genter By publiahing my reponse {he imperious call of the law, 1 woud corespondinpy comm mjelt to be response Unless, of course {were actually implicated in @ wager, a cha lenge, an impotule bet-—in shor, a stvation dhat would exceed the rmatis of merely engaging a commitment from me. And suppose for & onment that ft were impale not mix gunres. What i there were, Teg within the heart ofthe law Sf, a law of impurity ora pz ‘Spl of contamination? And suppose the condition forthe poset of the lay were the «prior! of a coumterla, am axiom of impossibility thst would confound its sans, order and reason? Thave ust proposed am aletive Petree (Interpretations 1 aid not do so, a8 you can sage, in exer to check myself. The lie fr ttt shat semed to separate the (wo bodies of interpretation ts ected straight away by an essenal srpsion that, for he time bring. shal let you name or qualify n any wa You ere to: as internal Ailton of he tae, sprit, corupton, contamination, decomposition, perverson, deformation, even eancentaton, generous proliferation or flegenerescenoe All hese disruptive ~anomalles™ are engendered—and ‘hi hae comman la, the lt or ste they share—by reptton, One Imight even say by citation or rectaon (réct), rovded that the 205 ‘The Law of Gane esuited se ofthese so words isnot call to srct gonede onder ‘citation in the sve sense implies all sores of context conventions, ‘rectution and protocols in the mode of ltrs, of coded signs such quotation marks or other typographical devices sed for writing Sitadon. The seme holds no doubt forthe rect as form, mode, tear of dlscoure,even—and [shall etn to ts—as literary pe ‘And ye he law that proets the use, insrcto sen of the Words ‘tation and ret is treatened intimately and in advance bya counter Jaw shat constuis this ery la, renders it pore, condone it and ‘hereby venders le imposible for reasons of edges on wih we all yun aground In Just a memert to edge through oege sway from ot to hedge around dhe counterlaw felt. Tho ls and the sounteelaoe serve ach other, citations summoning each other to appear, sad exch reces the other inthis prooeoding (proces). There woul he ma case for concera if one wer rigoouly asured of beng we to detingish vith gor between a clistion anda non-sitation, a ret and a norte ‘ra epettion within the form of one or te other, Shall ot undertake to demonstrate, axing it ill pose, why you were unable decide whether the rentences with wich T pened this presentation and marked this context were or wer not "epettons of a cltutonal ‘ype, or whether they were or mere not of {he performative type; or certainly whether they were, both of thm, topather-and each tine together the one or the other, For perhaps Someone has noticed that, rom one repetition to the nen, 4 chige had insinsated tel into the relationship between the two inal terances. The punctuation had been slghy modited, as had the ‘content ofthe sscond independent clause. This barely notable shift ‘ould thoorecaly have created a mutual independency between the Inerprotauve altematies tat might have tempted you to opt for ene the other, or for one and the other of tows two sentences. A pat teularly rich combinatory of posites would this ensue, whic, fonder not to exceed my Himelimit and out of respect forthe law of fenre and of the audience, I sball abstain from recounting, I a ‘imply going to assume a certain reladonahip betwoen what as just, "ow happened and the engin of literature, as well ast aborgine or [ts abortn, to quote Philppe Lacoue abaste, ‘Provisinally claiming for myself the authority of such an assump ton, I shall et cur Beld of vison contract at I lilt mpelf to = sore Gf species ofthe geno “guare" shall focus on this gnze of peme ‘which i geezally supposed, always it on rath, not be part of natures of physi, bo rather of cna ofthe at, sll re naowly ‘of poetry, and most particularly of literature. But a the same Use, 1 take the liber to think tha, while lity myself has, T exclude Dothing, at eas in pinclple and de jare—the selationsipe here no 206 Jncqver Dede longer being those of extension, from exemplary Sndiidual to spice fom species co gence au gente or from the genre of gonze to gene st oneal, rather ase tll sf these Telatonehips aoa wholo omer pert What i at wake im effet exemplary and ls whole enlgma— In ether words, at the word enigma indicater, exemplaty and the tt which works trough the loge ofthe exam Before going about puting a certain example to the test, shall assem to formulate, ina manner ax lpia, economical, and formal ‘Se pouil, what ell ell he law ofthe aw of gone. Is precisely ‘riciple of contatnnation aw of spur a paraical economy Ip the ende of et theories, if may tae it atleast Sguratiely, 1 would Speak of 2 sort of partipacion witout belonging=-a taking par in ‘without being pat of, without having membership in @ set. The tlt thse marks membership snewitbly avis, sho boundary of the set ‘comes to form, by imeaginaton, an itera pockat largor than the ‘whole; andthe ostoome ofthis division and ofthis abounding remains Ss singular as smiles. "To demonetrate thi I shall bold 1 the leanest generalities. But I should like to justify this inital indigence of asceticism 36 well at posnible. For example, I shall not enter Into the passionate debate rowght forth by pool on the Uheory and the hisiory of gnre-heory, on the ential history ofthe concept of genre from Pato tothe preset My stance is motivated by these cnsierations: ip the ist plac, we ‘ow have at our disposal rome remarkable, and, of Int, handsoma)y vce works dealing either wilh primary texte or exteal analyses. Sev thinking especially ofthe journal Potague, of is lasve ented Gentes” (38) and of Ganete's opening esa, Cenres, "Types Modes From yet another point of view, L’absolu Utéraie (The Literery Ab Solute) hae aveady erated gulto air In this context, and evening {hat shall sk ere sould perhaps resove Itself na modest annotse tion on the margins of this maples work which T asume same of ou have seedy read, Icould further jurfy my abstention or 2 Sstinence here simply by acknowledging the terminological xury Gr raprore aswell asthe caxtoomie exuberance which debates of hie nd, in 4 manner by no means frtttous, have sprked> fel com ‘pletely powerless co contain this ferele prolferaton—and not only eceuse of Umecunstraits. I shall put fort, instead, too principal rmotves, hoping thereby wo justify my Keeping to seant preliminary eneralites at he edge of his problema. "To. what do these two sootves cnwenlly relato? In it most recent pse-—and the mh is entsinly clear i Genet propositions ‘Tene mort advanced crcl axe has led a rereading of the ene history of gemresheery. This rereading has ben inspired by ee perxp- tlon-and ama be sak, dept the iii] dena, by the caection ot 207 ‘oo types of misconsruing or confusion. On the one hand, and this (il he the fast motive or round for my abstention, Plato and Arstole Ihave boen subjected to conederble deformation, a6 Genette reminds ‘on inwofar ab they have been viewed in tons siento the GnklDg, nd even in teria that they theroelves would ave rejected but his formation has wsualy taken on the form of naturalization. Following S"Gtoscal peeedent, one bs deemed natural structures o typical forms whose etry i hardy natural, but rather, quite tothe contrary. Complex and heterogeneaus, These forme have bean woot eb natal ghd fetus bear in mind the entice semantic wale of this ifiult, svord whose span i 40 [arranging and open-ended that it extends 9s Taras the expression natural langage,” by which term everyone ages tacit to oppose natural language nly t formal racial language swthout thereby implying that his ntl language simple physeal { Hoogieal prdveton, Genete insists at length on hls natural lon of genres "The history of geneeory is szevm with these fst- hhaing outlines that fnform and. deform realy, 3 reality often Detergenous to te literary fed, and that claim t©ascover « natrat ‘stem wherein they constroct a factilous symmetry heavily rein- forced by fake windows (alles sded,p. 408) In ts most efficacious fod legate aspect hs ciel reading of the history Ca) of genne- ‘hoor is baedl on an eppotion between nature and History, and, more fenerlly—as the allan to aa areal consniet indicates ( ‘therein dey constuct a factious symmetry. ..")—on an apposion etwoen nate aad what can be called the sels of all ts others, ‘Soeh an opposition seems to go without saying; placed within his tial perspective, it ls never quesoned. Even if I has been rosked ‘Seay discretely In some paseage that hat osaped my attention, this ihely vse suspicion clearly ad no effect onthe general organization ofthe problematic, The does sot dbminish the relevance or fecundicy th a weding suck as Genetes. But a pace remains open for some frelininery questions concerning his peropposton, fo some gues Eons concerning the boundaries where ie bepns 1 take bod or take place The form of these boundaries wil contain me, and tein me i, ‘Those general propositions whose number i always open and indeter Ininable fr whatever ena! ssterpeetaton wil not be dealt with here What however soems t0 me to regue more urgent attention Is the Teltcnahp of nature to into, of nate to Sx others, precise when fenre te onthe fine Tet us consider the most genera concept of genre, frum she minimal rat or predicate delineating # permanenty though the ‘Rodulaions of as types and the repens of ts histry: jt rends and ‘etends elt by mustering al energy against a simple opposition that ares ftom nate and from hitry, as from nature and the 208 nog Dera vast neage of ts others (techn memos, thsi, then spit, society, Freedom, history, ). Betwoon physir and Ss other, genor certainiy ‘itvaer one ofthe pilleged scenes ofthe proces, ado dot, sheds {he greatest cbseurty on il Ope need not meblize etymology 10 this fend snd could Jost at well equate genos with bis, and bt Sn torn fvieh the generour force of engenderment or generation physi, in ‘rote with race, familial membership, clasiicatry genealogy ot lass, age clas (eoneration) or socal cane ft comes as no surprise (hat, nature and ar, genre, a coneept that is essentially classi tory and geneslogicotanonomic elf engenders so many claseatory ‘vergines when It gos about clastying wef and stuaing the class ‘eatory pinple or instrument within a st As withthe das tel, the ‘rnciple of genre is undassfable, ols ch hoell ofthe knell (gs, bother words of clansicum, ef what pete one to callout (calere) Indestes the place, the now or never ofthe mo necentry medion fn the fed” which Se no more historical than matoral fm the classiest tense ofthese two words, and which turne phyein overt taf Tore ‘there tht petape no longer aelat tot acording to that epoch making logie which was decoy, eal, oppositional, even ~dllecical, but Tather according tthe tat of contact ently other, De fare this ‘meditation acts as an absolute prerequisite without which any histories Daspectvaing wil sliare be eifeule to legitimate. Fer example, Uae [Fomantieera~thle powerful Agure indicted by Genete (since i at tempted to veatapet the sytem of modes ax 2 system of genes) —ie no longer simple era and ean no longer be Incaibed ts oment ot etage Blaceable within the trajectory Of « “history” whose concept we ould be certain of Romantic f something of the sot ean be Tus ‘enti, is alo the gonerel repetition of all tbe fe that in theme felves gather, couple, divide pyse as wel as genos trough the genre, ‘nd though all he gees of genze, Unough the mixing of gere that, {2"more than a genre” though the exces of genre In elation to tse, ‘tots shounding movement and tz general assemblage which coin- ‘aes, to, with ts desoltton* Sich 2 "moment i no longer a sine {omnia the history ad theory of ersry pees. To teats thas ‘would infect mpliate ene a ebutery-whence the steange lople— of something that har in islfconsttutd a certain romantic moti, ‘amy the eelogcal ordering of story, Romande simultanoonsly ‘obeys natralizing and historcning lgi, and it ean be shown easly ‘cough that we have not yet been delivered from the roman hextage ‘ven though we might wish itso and assuming that such a deliv lance would be of compelling interest to usa JOBE a6 Wo Persist In Grawing tenon to historic concerns and he truth of storeal production in erdor to militate against abuses or confusions of natural 209 ‘The Law of Game ation, The debate, i ould be argued, romaine itself pare or effect “A socond motive detains me at the thretold or on the edge of 2 possible problematic of gare (a) history and theory of history and of {ome theory another gente n fc, For the momen, 1 Be Ie impo Mle to docide—tmpossibe fr rarons that Ido not take to be acc ‘dental, apd this procs, te what mates to me—T find it impose te decide whether the poosbly exemplary text which T intend to put tothe test does or dove ot lend elt to the dstnction drawn between ‘mode and gene. Now, as You may recall, Genete demonstrates the Geingent necessity of this distinedon; and he este his case on “the ‘infusion of modes 204 genres” (P. 417). This imple a serious change Sait romnticiom, eventhough “the omantc reinterpretation of the fyetem of modes as a spre of genze is etter defacto nor de jure ‘the eplogse this lang histor” (p. 415). Tis confusion, according to Conti has sided and abated the naturalztion of genres by pee Jecting onto them the "pvllege of naturalnes, which was legitimately That of tee modes =" (p 421), Saddenly, this naturalization Spates hese arcbgenres into ideal or ‘materal «ypee which they ‘either ane mor can be: there are no are-gmres that can totally escape Distority while preverlny @ generic defntion. Tere are modes, for fxamnle: the réee, Thee are genter, for example: the nove; the {elation of genres to modes fe complex and, pezhape et, a6 Arce fugents, one of imple inclusion.” TT am inclined to pine myelf on ths sde of Genet’ argument, ‘45 not only beosune of his ready acceptance of che dstintin between ‘ature ad Hltory, bot alo beens of ts splleatons with regaed to fmoge and t the disinction between mode and genre. Genet'c fetinion of mode contain this singular and interesting characterise Strematns in conradstinten to gene, purely formal Reference to & unten has no pertinence. This isnot the case with gente The generic Citron and the modal exeron, Cenet say, are sbsolutely hetero. nour. “each gente defined self emendaly by a spediicaon of ‘Content which was no presrted bythe defini of mode." (p. 417) {To not believe that tis recourse &o the oppostion of form and con tent, his dstcton between toade and gente, need be contested, aed ‘ny purpose Is not to challenge iaeatdanpects of Genet’ srgument. ‘neg just question the prersppostons fo te legitimacy of such fn argument, One might alo question the extent to which his argue tent can beip uw tea gfe text when tt bebaves in e given way tth regard to mode and gence, expellly whe the text doesnot sem UD be writen sent within their Mane, but rather about the rery Sbjct of thoes Hn, and withthe alm of disupting thelr order The limits, for instance, of that mode which would be, according to 210 JIscquor Deede Genet, the récte ehere are modes, for example: the ri”). OF the {poeshy) exemplary text which 1 thal addrese shor, 1 thal not Dhasten to ad that 6a "yét, and you wil soon understand why. Ia this text, the rete not only e mode, and mede put Ino practice ‘or put the west because it deemed Smpossible, it Is also the name (of a theme, Te isthe sonthematizable tematic content of something ‘f & textual form that apmumes a pot of view with respect 10 the tenve, even though Se perhaps doer not come under the heading of fny gente—and perhaps no logor even under ch heading of iterate, ‘ie ideod wears ise ext around gonreless modalizations, it would Conti one of Genete’s proostlans: "Gentes are, propery speaking, Ieary/or aesthec categories, modes are eatgores hat pertin 1 linguists or more precisely, 10 an anthropology of verbal expression (Pais). In very singular manne, te very short text which 1 wil discuss present males the réct and ibe Impossblty of the rétt ts theme, ffs tmpovsite theme or content a once inacseuile,indetersinabe, Interminable and inexhaustible, and st makes the word“réi” onder the ‘opis of certnin form, it eles tile, the mentionless mention of ste gence. This text, srl shally to demonstrate, coos to he made, famong other things, t0 make light of all the tangull categories of fgenmeeory and history In order to upset thelr taxonomie cerns, the distribution of tha cles, and ihe presumed ably of thir Classical nomenclatore, [tis text destined, atthe same ime, 12 from the proceeding to the law of genre. For ifthe jriieal code has ‘requeniy thru elt upon me in order to hear tis cas, shes dene soo cll as wines a (posely) exemplary text, and because Tam onsineed copious nights ate bound up In al of thier the Taw Kesey statale “These ae the two principal reasons why I shall kep the minal ge of (the) history (and) of gearedheory Here ow, very aul, is {he law of abounding, of excess, to Taw of participation without ‘membership, of contamination, ot, which T meataned eal. Tt wil Seem meager to You, apd even of staggering abstractness, It does ot ‘articularly cancem either genres, oF tps, oe modes or sty form In {he nit sense of es concept 1 therefore donot know under what te the fed o object submited to tie Iw shold be place, I x perhaps ho lies Sold of guneral textual. T can tako each word of the eros (gente, ype, mode, form) and decid that it wil old for ll the fers (ll gente of genes, pes, modes, forms; all «ype of 175, fenres moder, forms; al form of forms, ec). The trait commen She clare of clases is proily the identifiable recurrence of com 1mon tat by which one recognizes, should recognise, a membership a fm a class There shouldbe alt upon which one could rely in onde decide that 2 pven textual event, a ven “work,” corresponds to a given ‘lass (genre, type, mode, form, et). And there shold be a code enabling one 9 decide querdons of claememberehip on the base of {hie teat. For examplo—a very humble axiom, but, by the stme Token, hardly contestablo-if a genre exists (let us say the novel, since 70 fone seems to contest ie generic quality), then a code should provide fn Menifabe trae and ne whic i deta otf, thorny us ‘eterine, 10 adjudicate whether given text belongs to this genze or Dethape to tht gone. Likewise, outside of Iteratare or at, fone is bent om classifying, on thould consult «et of Hentiable and cod fable wat to determine whether this or tha, sich thing of rach a= trent belongs to thie actor that cats This tay seem tal. Such “tnctive trie gua mark is however always a Piri remarkable, ti “ways possible thats set—1 have compen seasons for calling this text, wheter i¢ bo wnten or orsl—remarks on this disuncuve walt ‘vn tel, This can occur in txts that do net, at = given moment, Ther themtelve o be literary or poets A defense speech or newspaper ‘trial can indicate by means of mark, even Ife i not exphetly ‘esignted as such, “Voll belong, st anyone may remaek, othe (pe ff tet call 1 defence speech or an srcle ofthe genre newspaper ‘toa The pony le alaye ther, This does not cones 2 text fp facto sr “teratue.” even though such a possiility, always Tett open end therefore eternally mathable, situates perhaps in every text the pont of te becoming iteratare. But this oes et Interest tne atthe moment. What interests me i al Uh remark—ever Pot ‘ie forever text, for every corpus of taces—it absolutly nacossary for and consincve of what oe cll sr poetry or erature 1c under ‘eres the ezupon often, which Se never long Sn coming. 1 submit {his axomate question for your consideration: ean one identity 2 work of at of whatever sort, but expecaly = work of discursive a it ‘oes noe bear the mark of pear, i docs not signal or mention it ‘or make ie remarkable any way? Let me clarify two pats 7 this fitject. First fe posible to have covers! gener, am determising of ences ora total gonze the gorse “gone” oF the pete or Inerary genre 2 gene of gees, Second, thle rematk can fake on a great number of forme abd can iealf pertain 1 highly diverse types, I peed not Be 3 designation or “mention” of the type found beneath the de of cetain books (nove, réct, drama), The remark of belonging need not pass through the consclousnes of the sithor or te reader, although it offen tooy . t can ako tfute this conscioumess or render the expt Snention” mendacous, fale, Inadequate oF tonic according © all sorts of ovedetermined figures. Finally, this vemavkingralt need be fetter 2 theme nor a Qemale component of the work—although of 212 Jequee Denia course this inttanoe of Belonging to one ae Several gonres, not to men ‘om al th tats that mark tls belonging, often have been tcated theme, even before the advent of what we call osemism.” I Tam not ‘mistaken in saying that such a tat is remarkable, hati, noticable, Inver aesthetic, poetic er literary corpus, then consider this paradox, onsier the irony (whichis Sreducble 10 a consdousness cr en at ‘itude): this supplementary and diatineve tat a mavk of belonging oF Inclusion, docs ot propsiy pertain to any genre or cass, Tho remark of elonging dees not belong I belongs without Belonging, and the “yithow (oe te sufi “lss") which zlates belonging to nom-belonging appears only in the timeless time ofthe blink of an eye [Augenblick ‘The eyed lower, bat barely, am sastant among instants, and hat Closes is very the eye, the view, the ight of day, But without sich respite, nothing would come to light To formate iti the scantest tanner‘ splest but ost apodcte—I submit for your consider Sion the folowing hypotbels; text cannot belong to no pene, fannot he without of less @ genre. Every text pardcipates one or several genres, thet ls o gemteles text tore J always @ gente and fenre, Jer roch participation never amounts to belonging. And not ‘noone of am abyndant oveiowing ora fee, snarehic and ncas fable prodvetty, bie tecoure of the eat of paripation sl, be cause ofthe oft ofthe ode and ofthe genesio mark. Making genre die mack, a text demaroates sel, If rmathe of belonging being ‘witout ‘belonging, parlpste without belonging, then gene: exignsons cannot be simply patt of tho corpus. Lat us tke the ‘esigntion “novel” as an example. This should bo marked In one ay tr another, ove if doesnot appear, as it often does In French sd ‘German enn the expt form of sbtied designation, and even ‘Hi proves deceptive a onl, This designation isnot novelist, does ‘ot, in whole or im prt, take part in the carpur whose denomination ‘nonetheless imparts. Nor simply extrancous tothe corpus. But {hie sgule topes pes within snd wathout the work, along its bound ‘ryan Snclusion and exchsion with regard to genze in general 8 to aD ‘nile clans in general, I gathers together the corpus and, atthe fesve time, inthe same bltking of eye, kee € fom closing, fom ‘ening tel with ef. This aon of non-closue or non Flliment fnfolde within elf the condition forthe post and the imposs- lity of taxonomy. This Incosion and the exclusion do not remain ‘exterior to one aneer, they donot exch each othe. But elder are ‘hey immanent or idendeal to each other. They are neither ane nor two. They form what shall eall the genreclawse, a clause stating at ‘once the Jura! uterance, dhe precedent making designation and the went, but also the close, the clang that excludes oe fom ‘what i cludes (one could also speak of & Roodgate[élute) of 213 pare). The clause or oodgate of genre declasee what it alls tobe ‘nse. Ils the kell f genealogy or of geneity, which i however Slso ringr forth tothe ight of day. Putuing to death the very thing that it engender, cuts a strange Agure, a formless form, It remains ‘easy inal, it neither see the day nor binge Hult ght, Without 4 nekther genre nor Itersture come to hight, but ax soon ar here Is tie linking of an ee, this lave or this fogate of genre, at dhe tery moment that a genre ora lteratre is broached, at that ery moment, ‘Gegenerescence has begun. the end begins. “The end begin, eis a eta. Maybe a ctaton. I might ave taken ftom tht text which seems to me to bing Itself forth a6 en ‘example, av an example ofthis Uniigrable gure of cuson ‘What I shall try to convey to you now yal not be called by is generic or modal name, {shall not say this drama, this pie, dis novel, {his novela or tie rét, certainly not hia vel All of these generic fr todal names woul be equally vl or equally inca for something ‘which nt even quite a bon, bot which was pablied in 1075 in the itor! form of «smal volume ofthirtytmo page. Te bears the te [Le Folie du jour (approximately: Tho Madness of the Day). The futhors name Maurie Blanchot. inorder o speak abou Teil ell, this thing La Foiled jor, se given name which beats legally and tehich gives vs the tight as of ite publleaton date, t densify and ‘lansify iin our copyigh records at the Bibliotheque Nacional. One ‘ould fashion a nonnite numberof readings from La Foie du ju T bhave attempted & few myself, and shall do so again elsewhere, frm Anuther plot of slew. The topor of view, sgh, Blindness, point of ew iS morave, scribed and tavesed in La Folie du jour according to fort of permanent revolution that engenders and vetualy beings 10 the Tight of day pats of vow, tw, versions and reversions of which the ‘sim remain necemaly uncountable andthe avant, impossible. The ‘edutions atoalizains, and wacings that Lom inevitably propose wri are, then, fiom an act of unjustdable violence. A bata and ‘ercesely depleningselecsvty wil oburude upon me, upon vs, Sn the ‘ume of law that La Folle du Jour ha, in tytn, already veviewe, fd withthe frenght ut certin kind of plie bratty 1s perhaps li inevitable accomplice to our concer for professional competance "What wil Task of La Fae du jour? To answer, 10 tex, 0 7 ‘what is to aay wt respect fo the law of mode or tho law of gente, land more precisely, with vespect (0 the Taw of the ret, whe, a8 We Ihavejust been reminded sa mode and nota gene, ‘On the coer below the ie, we nd ne mention of genre. In tls 214 most peculiar pace that belongs neler the senor 0 the subse, tor even smply to the corpus of the werk, the cuthor didnot affix Uithough ie Aas often done #o elsewhere, the desgnaton “rei” or Shovel" maybe (but only maybe) by erroneously subsuming both of ‘thom, Genetic would say, under the unigue category of the gente ‘Aboat thi deignaion which Agues elsewhere and whlch appears to te teent here faba sy nly two things "On the one hand commits one o nothing. Nether reader nor etic mo author aze bound to believe that the text preceded by this ‘exignaon conforme ready to the strict, normal, noemed or normative efntion of the gente, # the law of the genre or of the mode. Cor {uon, irony, the ifm conventions towaed 2 new dfiion