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- Medea theory
- Tofts, Darren
- To pursue poststructuralism to its limit is not to achieve closure, to culminate or come to the end of something. Rather, it is to acknowledge the force of the particulate; to no longer promise wholes, but to, rather, yield to the dissemination of bits. When Medea scatters the bits and pieces of her brother’s body on the Black Sea as a decoy to aid her escape with Jason and the Golden Fleece, she is the fugitive presence of deconstruction. Her means of evasion casts her as the emblem of a theory of medeation in which there is arrival at a destination, but at a price: the inevitability of contingency and entropy. Medea will do whatever is necessary to secure escape or advancement. She represents the extremes of promiscuous, miscreant behaviour that would befall writing in the Socratic theory of media. Towards the end of the play Medea appears to Jason in a chariot drawn by dragons with the bodies of her dead children. Having murdered them in a symbolic act of vengeance against her husband, she stands guilty of infanticide: the vulnerable child killed by its own parent. Long before Gerald Graff’s identification of the postmodern moment in literature, here was writing against itself.
- Publication type
- Journal article
- Research centre
- Swinburne University of Technology. Faculty of Life and Social Sciences
- Rhizomes: Cultural Studies in Emerging Knowledge, No. 9 (2004)
- Publication year
- Classical studies; Communication; Critical theory; Derrida, Jacques, 1930-2004; Euripides, c. 480 BC-406 BC; Foucault, Michel, 1926-1984; Greek mythology; Information exchange; Joyce, James, 1882-1941; Literary theory; Medea; Media theory; Mediation; Postmodernism; Poststructuralism; Socrates, c. 470 BC-399 BC; Theall, Donald
- Publisher URL
- Copyright © 2004 Darren Tofts. Paper reproduced here with the kind permission of the publisher.
- Full text
- Peer reviewed