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Reviews355 Freud listened to his patients: to read listening to the silences, listening at the same time to others and to oneself, being aware that so to listen is to risk all. It is to let the texts address and perhaps surprise one. The male texts read from Felman's life turn out to narrate stories of female resistance, while the female texts demonstrate the impossibility of female autobiography. Balzac's mad heroine in "Adieu" resists recognition of and by her lover, while the heroine in "The Girl with the Golden Eyes" resists sexual appropriation by having both a female and a male lover. In Freud's dream, Irma resists his treatment, her complaint resists interpretation, and her "female knot of pain" resists the psychoanalytic theory that is being born with Freud's theory of dreams. Dreams play a large role in What Does a Woman Want? Their analysis during her psychoanalysis revealed to its author both her "own life story as unknown— that is, not merely unrecognized but unsuspected" (p. 122)—and a kind of understanding that has "the uncanny force of act" (p. 122) in showing something unsuspected that once seen changes (converts, turns around) the one who sees it. Women's own stories lie in something ofwhich they cannot be in possession and to which dreams are a privileged road. Felman found women's resistance in Balzac and Freud when she read them for and with her life, and women's dreams in their autobiographies, in which are inscribed what their memories cannot contain. Interpreting women's stories as dreams are interpreted, Felman bears witness to her connection with mothers, daughters, and sisters and shows how the lot of all women is one with theirs. City University of New YorkMary Bittner Wiseman OfDerrida, Heidegger, and Spirit, edited by David Wood; ix & 149 pp. Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1993, $39.95 cloth, $16.95 paper. In Of Spirit Derrida patiently examines the twists and turns in Heidegger's dance of approach and avoidance with spirit under the sign, as he tells us, of ghost, flame, and ashes. To read Heidegger now, responsively, is to read him against his own denials and avoidances with regard to Nazism and genocide and it is also to ask what resources there are in his own thoughts and unthoughts for a more significant response than those he was able to formulate explicitly. To read Heidegger through the lenses of OfSpirit is to see him torn between a metaphysical conception ofspirit that was rejected in Beingand Time, but which came back to haunt him in the rectoral address and the Introduction to Metaphysics, and another sense ofspirit that tends to disrupt the metaphysical and which is most evident in the 1953 Trakl essay. 356Philosophy and Literature The essays in this collection set out from a variety of directions to clarify or challenge Derrida's reading of Heidegger's unthought, and some of them extend the project by suggesting what is unthought and avoided in Derrida's own essay. Geoffrey Bennington offers an incisive statement ofwhat Derrida is up to in OfSpirit, and along with David Wood's introduction, he provides a way into the thematics of responsibility that runs through this set of essays. Wood's own piece focuses on Heidegger's rectoral address and finds it dominated by the ghost of Hegel, that is, by the ghost of Geist (the words have a common linguistic history). In a telling comparison with an almost contemporaneous essay by Theodor Adorno, Wood explores the question ofwhat it might mean to realize or actualize philosophy and shows that Heidegger's criticism of Hegel's spirit is part and parcel of his claim that Hegel has ontologized and eternalized time, foreclosing the possibility of a genuine openness to futurity. Yet insofar as the rectoral address assigns an organizing function to spiritwithin the Volk and the university, there is an ominous tension between such openness and "the application of management (or military) logic to Spirit" (p. 81). David Krell suggests that Heidegger's thoughts on the relation between humanity and animality would provide a sharper focus on the meaning ofspirit in his work, and he points, in Derrida's spirit...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1086-329X
Print ISSN
0190-0013
Pages
pp. 355-357
Launched on MUSE
2011-10-05
Open Access
No
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