[KB] "Deacon"-structing Burke Part Whatever

Edward C Appel edwardcappel at frontier.com
Tue Nov 11 11:35:05 EST 2014

Greg and Carrol,

Greg, on Burke as something of a Postmodernist, Tim Crusius stands pretty much at that pole of Burkean interpretation.  Tim seems to have given especial weight to P&C.  Trevor Melia, and John Stewart and Karen Williams, have come down on the side of Burke as very much un-Postmodern, Stewart and Williams even calling Burke a "Cartesian representationslist."  A panel at Airlie House in 1993 debated the question.  Jim Chesebro and somebody else said Burke wasn't Postmodern enough.  Andrew King and David Cratis Williams said the opposite, as I recall.  Of course, for Jim, Burke's falling short of Postmodernism was a huge failing of his; for Melia, it was a blessing.

Melia put great weight on "recalcitrance," of course, but also on what Burke says on p. 272 in RR: "For however the world is made, that's how language is made."

More later in reply to your post, and Carrol's.  Suddenly have to get to something else.


On Mon, 11/10/14, Gregory Desilet <info at gregorydesilet.com> wrote:

 Subject: Re: [KB] "Deacon"-structing Burke Part Whatever
 To: "Ed Appel" <edwardcappel at frontier.com>
 Cc: "Stan Lindsay" <slindsa at yahoo.com>, "kb at kbjournal.org" <kb at kbjournal.org>
 Date: Monday, November 10, 2014, 8:43 PM
 Thanks for your comments, Ed.
 You’re a brave
 man to raise the topic of Burke and Postmodernism—that’s
 a thorny issue given
 the many facets to Burke (will the “real” Burke please
 stand up?) and the
 confusions surrounding Postmodernism. So you’ll understand
 if I don’t go there,
 but I do find the position you express quite reasonable.
 As for science influencing the
 interpretation process towards texts—yes. But experimental
 testing as an
 approach to interpretation? Not sure how that would work.
 Which reminds me of
 an interesting distinction—not sure if I’ve mentioned it
 before in some other
 thread. The physical universe may be full of causal links
 but the textual
 universe is only comprised of interpretive (associative)
 links. And, given the
 weirdness of quantum theory, we may begin to wonder what a
 “causal link” might
 be. Could it share some properties with interpretation? Ugh,
 I’ll understand if
 you don’t go there. Greg

More information about the KB mailing list