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        authoriality writing its authorship
gary e. davis

March 20, 2016

part 5 of 8


On the one hand, there is the author who finds herself drawn into what readers expect. The authorship may be brought by a reader against the grain of the evolving authoriality. Publishing pseudonymously is useful, but should be an option that the author doesn’t feel forced onto her authoriality. On the other hand, the authoriality commonly seeks to be known as the authorship that is known, playing into that, book to book, not because that’s compelled by the market. On the one hand, J. D. Sallinger withdrew from publishing (but legendarily continued to write without intent to publish). On the other hand, Henry Miller, Phillip Roth, Normal Mailer, and Gore Vidal couldn’t get enough of their franchise. William Carlos Williams was a physician; Wallace Stevens an insurance executive.

Yet, the most important difference here is that the author works within her authorship with manifold differences between the voice of the authorship and voices of narrative episodes, characters, stances of characters relative to scenes, other characters, story eras, and authorial venturing. Quoting oneself can be s/p-differential. A narrator quoting a character is doing what? How much narrative echoing of authorial influences is involved in readerly claiming of authorial allusion by the “unwitting” narrator?

An auratic resonance exists in creative process among all of these elements within a given authorship set up by an authoriality, as the authorship in turn sets forth narrative that sets up the story, as the story in turn sets forth characterization that is set up into scenes that in turn set forth implicatures that set up suspense, indecision, anguish, elation, or heartbreak.

[I don’t intend to dwell soon with Heidegger, but the difference between setting forth: being—like individuating across time—and setting up: getting to being, presentation—the resultant individuality “here” with you or reflecting oneself as “me”—is an axial difference for his sense of the “essence of truth,” which belongs to that existing, generative difference, or liminality, of being; e.g., living a life (deeply backgrounded being) across eras of one’s life (broadly representable being): being of and in lifeworlds: we, the alive. Accordingly, any presence (here) has its genealogy; any action (observable) has its twofold definition; anyone has their self-concealing presence; overt phenomenality has its aura (potentially); creativity has its performative process; conceptuality has its generativity; artistry has its art (working into the artwork).

The truth that we may seek to capture (make present) derives from the truth of the life.

That’s beyond and prior to the representational difference between concept and practice; or between epistemic that and how. Both presume the latent liminality of ontogeny (presencing), so to speak, and what’s “here”/ there.]

What’s going on with reader constellation of “authorial” (authorshipal) intention from so many narrative passages across one work? What’s the difference between construed authorship (which is all a reader ever gets from the text) and authoriality that sets up the reader’s textual horizon?

Determinate cohering of authoriality in the name—Jamesian, Deweyan, Nabokovian, Einsteinian, etc.—is constellated by readers (which may be why you disdained regarding an artist’s name as modifier). It’s not authoriality that is made into a proper kind; it’s authorship. “Does ‘Proust’,” I asked, “conceal Marcel, the authoriality, waiting to be found?”

This carries over into approaches to thinking, so commonly referenced in scholarship by proper names, as if the authorship is an essential authoriality (which may be the case, maybe not). Socrates had to drink hemlock because he performed too well as “Socrates” (made culpable for his performative efficacy—he who was not the same as Plato’s dialogal figure, though Plato’s character was inspired by the real one, in Plato’s way.) Was Kant Kantian? Is the Kant of the First Critique (cognitivist) the same Kant of the Third (aesthetic)? Of course, but then what is this “same”? Kierkegaard had two versions of Johannes and many other character names through which he published. So, “Kierkegaard” is the all-and-none creative manifold set up by Kierkegaard whose authoriality is never met? Is Derrida of Grammatology the same “Derrida” of The Copy? Derrida would have us see everything in quotationality: everything becomes glyphical, emplacing, enframing, enplacing “itself”?, “being” enframed. Who is being followed around in the film titled “Derrida,” a figure of performance art?

Heidegger, as basis for Arendt’s notion of “rumors of the hidden king,” due to his enthralling lecture Presence, was certainly a performance artist already, in the mid-1920s. Who was he who was never there, instead doing his most lasting work alone in “The Hut,” high in nearby hills miles from everyone—away from wife Elfride’s “Martin,” away from colleagues’ “Heidegger” (though Husserl, Löwith, Jaspers, and Arendt didn’t get the memo)? “Does ‘Heidegger,’ the authorship, conceal Martin, the poetic thinking, waiting to be found?”

Another dimension here (which fascinates and perturbs me) is the famous omniscient narrator, reading every character’s psyche, as if. Is the authorship the fiction of omniscience, with which we readers conspire to pretend godly access to others via a sanctified voyeurism? Of course, the gods can do that, because they author the world that they access as apart from the world that they created (i.e., creating their seprateness, too—as Duns Scotus “affirmed” of Catholicism’s “God” [¶s 2 and 3], millennia after ancient pluralities of gods—mirroring us [longing for perfectibility and/or comprehensive comprehensibility of Nature’s manifoldness]—were displaced by that one and only).

So, a lot can be done with senses of backstage <—> frontstage relativity between authoriality irt authorship, carrying s/p-differentiality throughout the textual cosmos.

And so it came to pass that all articulation is hermeneutical (translational), innerworldly to outerworldly, if not channeling deep “Self” through oneself before getting set up for prime time; or so done unwittingly for a psychotherapist’s aptly construed client-othering (by the client) that is unconscious (displacement which is doubly translational). So, an authorship isn’t the property of the author because the reader writes “our” own?



next: being time, part 6 of 8

    © 2016, gary e. davis