vol. 4 No. 2 Dec. 2020

Derrida and the Art of Embalming: Thanatopraxie in “Tithonus” and A Tale of a Tub
Author:Jayjit Sarkar, Jagannath Basu    Time:2021-02-20    Click:

Abstract: Taking a cue from Jacques Derrida’s Glas, this paper seeks to understand the idea of thanatopraxie or embalming in art. It sees thanatopraxie as a strategy to (en)counter the prevalent idea of a “book” as the repository of the “truth” and the “divine.” It argues that a work of art can only exist in the world by transforming into “what(ever) remains” of a work— a wo—. Thanatopraxie thus, brings down a work from the realm of the transcendental and the divine to the world of banal existence. And, in order to comprehend these maneuverings, this paper looks into “Tithonus” and A Tale of a Tub as texts where the “penetrable openings” are purposely kept open for the transformation of a work (in) to a wo—.

Keywords: thanatopraxie, Derrida, death, threshold, work, wo—

Thank you for visiting our website. Designed by Tang Tianle

All Rights Reserved. Journal of Foreign Languages and Cultures, Hunan Normal University.