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Hyde Ethics Play

Hyde Ethics Play

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Published by Michael Kaplan

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Published by: Michael Kaplan on Oct 16, 2012
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03/02/2013

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T
EX
T
AN
D PERFORM
ANCE
Q
ARTE
KLY
t23
HYDE
AND
SARGENT
C
ompletene
ss
for
ever
ex
tend
sbeyond o
ur
finite grasp. The contingency
of
hum
anexistencemakes sure
of
th
al.In
th
e
exper
im
enlalgameca
ll
ed life,
"o
bjective
un
ce
rt
aint
y"
is ever
pr
esent.a
nd thu
s sois play.'
Th
e
und
erstanding of thepe
rf
o
rman
ce of pl
ay
e
mph
asizedhereh
ea
ds onein anontological
dir
ec
ti
on fora
ppr
eciatingthe scope and func
ti
onof the
phen
o
m-
en
on.Mostof thefami
li
ar researchon playa
dmit
s amuch less"philoso
phi
cal"bent. Especia
ll
yinthe
fie
ld
of
speechco
mmuni
ca
ti
on. playistypica
ll
y
ap
pr
oac
hed
as a s
trat
egyfor man
ag
ing a
nd manipul
atinginterac
ti
ve
ep
isodes.
6
Re
ce
ntly, however1aconversationanal
ys
tconce
rn
ed
with d
evelo
pinga"science
ofspeech"has
turned
thin
gs
aroun
da bit.I n the essay,"Speech
Erro
rs a
ndthe
P
oe
ti
cs
of
Co
nversa
ti
on,"
Robe
rt
Hopperemphasizeshowsuche
rr
ors give
ri
se
to"play episodes"that a
dmi
t "p
oet
icinAuences," and
that the
a
Ain
ity between these episodes a
nd
inAuences should not be ign
ored.'
As
he pu
ts it,
"The
poetic
influences atplay withinand fo
ll
ow
in
g speecherrors may not
in
evitably over
ride otheraspects of languageuse,
but
nevertheless
we
should attend to what these associa
ti
onalcoincidencesm
ay
teach
us."
For
here
.
in
thepoetics
of
playandthe play of
poe
ti
cs,H
opper
suggests,
li
es
"evidence"that
notonly"
proy
i
des
ro
ut
es
thr
oughaesthe
ti
csto ethics." butalso"reveals fragmen
ts
of
the
gr
eat
poemspeakingus
in
tobe
in
g."·
Hopperpr
ov
id
es ap
owerf
ul
warr
antfor research inconversationanalysis s
in
cehis sugges
ti
ons encoura
ge
li
S
lO
believe thatwilh thistype of
in
quirywe
may catch agl
imp
se ofaphenomenonthaLnOLonly
inf
or
mstheplay
fu
l
wa
ys
of
hum
anco
mmuni
cati
onbut alsopresents
it
self as a
so
ur
ce
of
ethicalguidance.
9
But
at the same
Lim
ehe alsol
ea
ves us to confrontsomething
of
anontol
og
i
ca
l
imp
asse: "the great p
oem
speakingusintobein
g'"
Strangeta
lk
fromnne whois co
mm
ittedtobuilding a"scienceofspeech."Whatexac
tl
yisthisp
oem
of
which Ho
pp
er speak
s?
If
it
is
som
et
h
ing
th
at
is
"spea
king us
in
to
be
in
g,"
then
one
might presume
th
at
it
is
somehowrelatedto
th
e
pe
rf
o
rm
ance
orp
l
a}'
thatmar
ks
hum
anexistence.Isthis why
et
hi
cs
entersthepict
ur
e'
In
wh
at fo
ll
ows
we
develop
our
di
sc
ussion
of
t
he pe
r
fo
rm
ance
of
play asa
wa
y
of
coming to grips with Hop
per
'sprovoca
ti
ve
andques
ti
onable
suggestions.
Our
di
sc
u
ss
ion leads to ana
ppr
ecia
ti
on
of
play as something
that
ismore th
an
astrategyf
or
manipula
ti
ng
andman
ag
ing
interac
tive
ep
isodes
and
thus assomethingthattranscends
the
r
ea
lm
of
su
bj
ectivi
t),.
Wetrace apath
of
inquiry
mad
epossiblebythree
ph
il
oso
ph
er
s-Ma
rtin Heid
egge
r,Jacques
De
n-ida, and
Hans-
Ge
or
g Gadamer-who, each in his
ow
nway,
wo
uld haveus a
ppr
eciatethe
perf
o
rman
ce ofpl
ayas
defining a
ph
enomen
on
that
is
n
Ot
si
mplythepl
ay
of
som
eo
newhoisplay
in
gbutth
al
is
nevertheless fundam
en
ta
ll
yrelated to
",
howe are aslanguage-users. ascreatures
of
conversa
ti
on,
as be
in
gs who make the
world
me
aningful
and
ethicalby way ofourdiscursi
ve
pr
dCl
iccs.We believethat thisjo
urn
eyis responsive toH
oppe
r'ssuggestionsand t
hu
s
pert
in
ent
to those
communicat
ion researcherswhomightwa
nt
tothinkfurtherabout
the
li
fe
giving
perf
o
rm
ancein
qu
es
ti
on.
o
Th
ejo
urn
ey, however,isnotwith
out
its
pr
oblemsfor an
yo
ne who wan
ts
to build ascience
of
speech
on
"t
he gr
ea
t
poemspea
kingus intobei
ng
."These pro
bl
ems surface witheach
of
the
thr
ee
philoso
phers
'thinking on play a
nd
itsrela
ti
onship to aco
mmun
icative ethics; although
 
1
24
TEXT
AND
PERFORMA:"-!CE
(lL
'ARTERLY
AP
RIL
1993
as
we
move from
Heidegger
,
thr
o
ugh
Derrida
,
to
Gadamer the
problems
becomeless
imp
osing.
HEIDEGGER
ANDTHEPLAY
OF
BEING
Heidegger
's
ph
il
oso
ph
yunfoldsasananswer
to
a
qu
es
ti
on:what
is
the
meanin
g,
thetruth,
of
Bein
g'
In h
is
critique
of
the
me
t
ap
hysical
tradition,
Heideggeragreed
th
at
them
eaning
of
Being lies in its
occurrence
asthe
"presellci
ll
g"
of
what
i
s.
He stressed,h
oweve
r,th
at
t
hi
s occurrencepresupposes
aconcep
ti
on
of
tempora
li
ty
th
at
elud
esm
etap
hysics andits
em
pha
sis on the
"present"existence
of
"t
h i n
g~
l i k
e "
beings.
I
Heidegger thusmaintained
thaL
if
th
emeaning
of
Being
is
to achieve "genuin
e"
clarification,thenone must accountfor
its
temporalityby
in
ves
ti
gating how Be
in
g
becomes
presentand
there
fo
re truthful.
The
question
of
Being
and "the
problematic
of
Temporality"
go
hand
in
hand
.
As
demonstrated
in the
magnum
o
pus
Being and
Time
,
Heide
gger'sinitialway
of
workingo
ut
this
prob
lem
at
icwas
to
offera
phenome-
nologi
ca
landhe
rm
eneu
ti
ca
laccount
of the
" o
n t o l o g i c o ~ T e m p o r a l
"
constituti
on
of"
Da
sein" (or
human
being).With Heidegger,
then
, oneb
eg
ins
answering
di
e
Sei'llSjrage
by
pa
yingcare
fu
lattention to
what
wasrefe
rr
edto above as
the
play
of
conlin
ge
n
cy
,
of
objec
ti
veuncertaint
y,
cha
ra
cteriz
in
goureverydayexistence.
Heid
egger
speaks
to
us
of
thispl
ayas
the
"p
rimordialtime" ofa
human
being's
"authenti
ct
empora
lit
y"
which"
li
esin
advance
"
of
o
ur
co
mm
onplace
understa
nding
of
im
e.
I:!
Forexample,theterms"future
,"
"past,"and"present"
are
those
of
common,everydaytime.
They
suggest
wha
t
time
is
inal
anguage
of
measurem
ent.
andslandardi
za
ti
on:alanguage thatseparatestime intoalinear
progression
of discrete
unit
s;
a
language
ofseconds,
minutes
,hours,
da
ys
,years,
andso on;alanguagethat spatia
li
zestime by representing
it
as an
in
fi
nitesuccession
of
"
in
stants" or"nows
";
al
anguage
th
atma
ke
s
its
appearance
in
clocks. calendars.andm"ps.Suchalanguage,
howe-
ver,does not account for
th
eactual nature
of
humantemporality,forthe
way
this
phenomenon
happ
ens
b
efore
itis
tr
ansform
ed,
segme
nt
ed
and reinedbyex
pr
essions
that
co
mpose
co
mmon
parlan
ce.
The
way
of
te
mp
oralityis
thatof
a
unit
y
wherefutur
e,
pa
s
t,
andpresenlareirllerpenelratingand insepara
bl
e "ecstases"rather thenjuxta-
posed dimensions
definedwithin
an
object
ifi
edspatio-
temporalcoordinate
." A
humanbeingisnota"lhin
g"
thatmerely
Jive
s"
in
"time;
it
does not
ex
ist
just
"now"
an
d
"t
hen"asdoesa
wa
tch inapocket.Rath
er,
a
human
being
exists
as
lime
,
asonewho
is
presently
livi
ng
its
"h
av
ing been"whatonce
was its
futureand
who,al the
same
lime,is
preseml
yliving-out
thepo
ss
ibilities
that
are
yet
to
come.
Th
et
empora
lity
of
a
human
beingisa"
unit
ary
phenomenon.
"
The
"
future
,"
"past,"
and"
pr
ese
nt
"
presuppose
theecstaticch
aracte
r
ofthisph
e
nom-
enon'sexistence.Hence,
Heid
egger
write
s,
'
'The
ch
aracter
of
'
having
been
'arises from
the
f
utur
e,a
nd
in
suc
haway
that
the
fUlure which
'has
b
ee
n'
(or
better,
which'isinthe process
of
having
been
')releasesfromitself
the
Pr
ese
nt
.
This
phenomenon
hasthe
unit
y
of
a
future
which
mak
es
present
in
the
pro
cess
of
having
been
;we
de
s
ignate
itas
'temporality.'
"14
In his lec
ture''Time and
Being,"
Heidegger
offersanex
pandedand,
for
thepurposes
ofthisessay, c
ru
cial
description
of
the
"p
rese
ncing
"
or
Being
of

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