From Deflection to Reflection: A Creative Involvement with Language

  • Maria Balaska


Although an experience of astonishment shows a more general problem about the contingency or groundlessness of meaning, it also resists meaning in a very particular way. This is its central trait: Wittgenstein describes such experiences as essentially nonsensical; Lacan as a manifestation of “the signifier in the Real.” In this chapter I argue that although linked with a difficulty of intelligible expression, these experiences are not manifestations of an ineffable content. A different kind of expression, which I earlier called “reflection,” is possible but requires the speaker’s own creative involvement with language, and a certain shift in the kind of expression one was looking for. I discuss “reflection” and offer examples.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maria Balaska
    • 1
  1. 1.University of HertfordshireHertfordshireUK

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