talks and narrative as performance

Some talks:

"The first is Tuesday at noon in the Frank Blue Room. Peter Phillips, a professor of economics at the University of Utah and a Pomona alum, will be talking about "Chinese Immigration, Racism and Sexism after the Gold Rush". He is visiting this year at Pitzer (where his daughter goes to school and plays on the PP soccer team) and he will be examining the interesting question of whether markets discourage racism and sexism because they are inefficient, or whether they encourage them. He is a creative thinker and a pretty hip guy (for an economist!), so I would encourage you to go.

Second, on Wednesday Michael Hertel, the director of environmental policy at Southern California Edison, will talk about "If California leads, will anybody follow? Issues on energy and global warming policy." The talk is 4:00-5:30 in Balch Auditorium at Scripps. I bet it will be well attended so go early!"


It has been a pretty constant theme of this semester that we have seen something said about the intersection of literature and newish technologies and we have commented that that observation seems to be true of older non-digital literatures as well. Well, here's another. I'm all aboard with the notion of collective narratives, specifically Invisible Seattle , as not just a final product but also a performance. This is obviously true. Rettberg says that

Invisible Seattle was both the published versions of the novel and all of the other versions that could have been derived from the same larger pool of story material the invisibles gathered. It was also all of the events and interventions through which the texts were gathered. (part 8)

But don't all authors, whether singular or plural, engage in a similar pooling of story material? Isn't any novel, regardless of the multiplicity of its authorship, assembled (or thought of, dreamed up, inspired, etc.) by many events at various times, only some of which make it into the final version? I understand that interventions by invisibles are an obvious performance with an audience, stage, etc. but there is an unwitnessed performance of any novel. In the same way that Matt Kirschenbaum suggested we look to traditional textual studies for insights on how to think about changes in electronic materiality I think that Rettberg would do well to realize that much of the work that traditional scholarship does is concerned with re-imagining the performance of the novel by its singular author. In reading Woolf's Orlando in another class we are reading her journals from the period, her letters from the period, the real historical records that were Woolf's source for the family in the book, her own writings about the work, critical interpretations, draft versions, and anything else that might give us a better sense of the performance novel. A huge part of critical scholarship is processing all this. In this way Orlando "is both the publsiehd versions of the novel and all the other versions" just as much Invisible Seattle .