Main Article Content
This article engages with the theoretical concerns of contemporary textual criticism depicted by Jerome McGann, Peter Shillingsburg, and Paul Eggert through a case study of text-critical approaches to D.H. Lawrence’s short story, “Odour of Chrysanthemums”. I argue that text-critical readings of Lawrence’s tale lend themselves to a Derridean critique of archive fever, where the rigorous archivization of the historical text-document can be read as an unsuccessful attempt to unearth the ontological origins of the text-in-process, a univocal chronology of the author’s intentions over time. A Derridean critique of archive fever in Lawrence criticism poses productive questions to the distinctions contemporary textual criticism draws between, first, text and document, and, second, ideal text and the text-in-process. I show that a bibliographical study of the text-in-process — the close tracking of documentary changes over time — does not actually distance textual critics from the false but alluring notion that the document and the author’s intentions exist in a single state. The text-document, as I refer to it throughout, exists in multiple states over the span of its composition history, but the textual critic performs such a rigorous mapping of its documentary changes that the text-document, in its very multiplicity, takes on a singular form as historical or bibliographical narrative, where singularity is based not on the author’s original or final intentions but on a univocal mapping of the author’s intentions over time.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License (see:http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/) that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgment of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors warrant that their submission is their own original work, and that they have the right to grant the rights contained in this license. Authors also warrant that their submission does not, to the best of your knowledge, infringe upon anyone's copyright. If the submission contains material for which an author does not hold the copyright, authors warrant that they have obtained the unrestricted permission of the copyright owner to grant Indiana University the rights required by this license, and that such third-party owned material is clearly identified and acknowledged within the text or content of their submission.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgment of its initial publication in this journal.