Craig Sims




P.P.3; V.III

Page 5

disrupted and brought low by the jarring insistence
of an invasive and protruding physicality indubita-
bly holds true for Woolf, and a book made flesh by
the mark of the marginalist certainly adheres, in its
own way, to Bakhtin's definition of the grotesque.
Sylvia Plath condemned the addition of course, but
that mark is less troublesome as an amendment than
it is as a breaker of Heidegger's spell: a disengaging
reminder that the lifeless object temporarily sharing
in one's consciousness is merely that, and, absent the
performative activation of the reader, the inanimate
book falls dead.

But, if we come to concur with Karl Young that in a
time of transient texts upon digital displays “reading
becomes an ever more ephemeral act, more able to
hide or ignore its physical base", what is the signifi-
cance of a physical base that resists such obfuscation
on its own?63 The Eurydicean disembodiment of the
text to which Young alludes rather obviates Emma
Bolland's “sensuality of reading"; an expression,
after all, that courts a certain carnal corporeality.64
The acutely sensate object of the book, should that
intimacy be desired, cannot readily be excised from