Chicago, U Chicago P, 1981 trans. by BarbaraJohnson)[Note to the student: footnotes are designated by bold numbers inparentheses and have been moved to the end of the text instead ofat the bottom of each page.]
blow to the cheek, knock, slap . . .
(kolapto). Kolapto: 1. to
go into, penetrate,
esp., said of birds, to
peck . . . hence, to slash open with the beak . ..
by anal., said of a horse striking the ground with hishoof. 2. by extension, to
[poplar] Anrh. 9, 341, or
[bark],Call. fr. 101, an inscription on a poplar or on the bark ofa tree (R.
hollow out, scratch).A text is not a text unless it hides from the first comer, fromthe first glance, the law of its composition and the rules ofits game. A text remains, moreover, forever imperceptible. Itslaw and its rules are not, however, harbored in theinaccessibility of a secret; it is simply that they can never bebooked, in the
into anything that could rigorously becalled a perception .And hence, perpetually and essentially, they run the risk ofbeing definitively lost. Who will ever know of suchdisappearances?The dissimulation of the woven texture can in any case takecenturies to undo its web: a web that envelops a web, undoingthe web for centuries; reconstituting it too as an organism,indefinitely regenerating its own tissue behind the cuttingtrace, the decision of each reading . There is always a surprisein store for the anatomy or physiology of any criticism thatmight think it had mastered the game, surveyed all the threadsat once, deluding itself, too, in wanting to look at the textwithout touching it, without laying a hand on the "object,"without risking--which is the only chance of entering into thegame, by getting a few fingers caught--the addition of some newthread. Adding, here, is nothing other than giving to read. Onemust manage to think this out: that it is not a question ofembroidering upon a text, unless one considers that to know howto embroider still means to have the ability to follow the giventhread. That is, if you follow me, the hidden thread. If readingand writing are one, as is easily thought these days, if reading
writing, this oneness designates neither undifferentiated