Blog Post

Composing a blog and a self

I'm trisha. I'm a 3rd year phd student at the University of PIttsburgh, where I study all things relating to poetics, composing and objects. I am preparing my project papers on a new materialist poetics and the future of composing in both digital and non-digital spaces. I am interested in things and objects and an open method for affirmatively composing with those things. I suppose method and praxis are my preoccupations, but I am not interested in a perfectly repeatable method; instead, I'm after an open method, which may grant us method for beginning, for pursuing, but not ending or applying. 

I'm constantly repeating this to myself: nothing can be reduced to anything else, nothing can be reduced. 

Bruno Latour began with this bent obsession and I keep repeating it to see what else can be composed, if nothing can be reduced. 

My thoughts on blogging are that is is constantly processual; it is the rare moment of a construction site in mid-construct, never finished or wholly complete; this is precisely why it is so important and terrifying because this construction site cannot hide underneath a finished product; it must remain open and visible, wires and insualtion exposed, even as it is being composed. Here's Latour:

"The 'making of' any enterprise--films, skyscrapers, facts, poltical meetings, initiation rituals, haute couture, cooking [murder]--offers a view that is sufficiently different from the offical one...Even more important, when you are guided to any construction site you are experienceing the troubling and exhilarating feeling that things could be different, or at least that they could still fail--a feeling never so deep when faced with the final product, no matter how beauitful or impressive it may be" (Latour). 

This is where my process comes from and I seek to always expose as I am composing, whether it be murder (as a final product) or blogging about theories of rhetoric. We must ask ourselves: what is hidden; what has been made to disappear (see the "disappearance effect" by Bertram Bruce and Maureen Hogan).






1 comment

I love what you write here--in some ways, this kind of open process that you describe reminds me of the Oulipo writers, one of my research interests. Raymond Queneau's One Hundred Thousand Billion Poems is a materialization of an infinite number of poems generated by ten interchangeable sonnets. I've been working with this image as a metaphor for digital space for instance.  Looking at Wikipedia Talk Pages in my writing classroom has lead to discussion about writing and knowledge-building as an open process, as well as conversations about what "disappears" in a finished product. All those contested ideas about the facts in a Wikipedia article stay on the attached Talk Page for us to access, keeping the process exposed, as you say, like wires!