transgression: #6

continuing occasional bits from transgression essay; if interested, see
March 9, 1997 post (from me; ransom) for first five; my comments are
indented to facilitate skipping.

Selection #6: Transgression is an action which involves the limit, the
narrow zone of a line where it displays the flash of its passage, but
perhaps also its entire trajectory, even its origin; it is likely that
transgression has its entire space in the line it crosses. The play of
limits and transgression seems to be regulated by a simple obstinacy:
transgression incessantly crosses and recrosses a line which closes up
behind it in a wave of extremely short duration, and thus it is made to
return once more right to the horizon of the uncrossable. But this
relationship is considerably more complex: these elements are situated in
an uncertain context, in certainties that are immediately upset so that
thought is ineffectual as soon as it attempts to seize them. (33-34)

Again, the Bart Simpson-at-the-blackboard example seems to
help make sense of the above. The transcendent role that sexuality
played in Christian theology linked the ecstasy of sex to
another possible realm (heaven). Transgression, in contrast, is
not linked up to another order of reality. Instead, "transgression
has its entire space in the line it crosses." It is regulated by
a "simple obstinacy"--the kind of obstinacy Bart Simpson displays
when he's at the blackboard twisting his punishment around.

Selection #7: The limit and transgression depend on each other for
whatever density of being they possess: a limit could not exist if it were
absolutely uncrossable and, reciprocally, transgression would be pointless
if it merely crossed a limit composed of illusions and shadows. But can
the limit have a life of its own outside of the [transgressive] act that
gloriously passes through it and negates it? What becomes of it after this
act and what might it have been before? For its part, does transgression
not exhaust its nature when it crosses the limit, knowing no other life
beyond this point in time? And this point, this curious intersection of
beings that have no other life beyond this moment where they totally
exchange their beings, is it not also everything which overflows from it
on all sides? It serves as a glorification of the nature it excludes: the
limit opens violently onto the limitless, finds itself suddenly carried
away by the content it had rejected and fulfilled by the alien plenitude
which invades it to the core of its being; transgression forces the limit
to face the fact of its imminent disappearance, to find itself in what it
excludes (perhaps, to be more exact, to recognize itself for the first
time), to experience its positive truth and its downward fall? And yet,
toward what is transgression unleashed in its movement of pure violence,
if not that which imprisons it, toward the limit and those elements it
contains? What bears the brunt of its aggression and to what void does it
owe the unrestrained fullness of its being, if not that which it crosses
in its violent act and which, as its destiny, it crosses out in the line
it effaces?

Sort of like Hegel without Spirit and without the end of history.
One editorial note: in the quotation above I inserted the word
[transgression] in brackets for what I hoped was clarity's sake.
See fifth line of Selection #7.


Partial thread listing: