제목 : Sympathy and Indeterminacy in Toni Morrison’s “Recitatif”
- 저자 : Miehyeon Kim     - 조회수 : 736  - Download : 18
- 참 조 : 영미문학페미니즘 제23권 1호(2015)  
- 논문 받기 :
5.Miehyeon_Kim.pdf (234.6 KB),   


Toni Morrison’s sole short story, “Recitatif,” is, in her own
words, “an experiment in the removal of all racial codes from a
narrative about two characters of different races for whom racial
identity is crucial.” The challenge intended for the reader provides
an opportunity to examine the moral self-reflective movement in
sympathy, which is the main theme of the work as well as a
drive for the reader’s engagement with the work. The argument of
this paper starts from the view that morality is not reducible to
rules of abstract universality or norms of prescriptive social value
and that the subject inaugurates its reflexivity and ethical agency
in the context of an enabling and limiting field of constraints in
relation to a set of imposed norms and in relation to other
subjects. Morality involves an acting subject, and the movement,
act, or change takes place in self-reflection. As Adam Smith and
Judith Butler argue, our self-reflection in ethical deliberation is
facilitated in the interlocutory scene in which we are engaged in a
dialogue with another whether internalized or existing. Morrison
in this work shows that the desire or willingness to be engaged in
a dialogue with another becomes the structural conditions for
calling into question the truth of myself and my ability to tell the
truth about myself and that such self-reflection is driven in the
emotional closeness and mutual understanding between the two
parties. While the two main characters build such a relationship, it
also leads to their sympathy with a distant other. With its
indeterminacy and ambiguity, Morrison also places this work in
the social space or interlocutory situation created between her text
and the reader. The feelings of sympathy that Morrison evokes in
“Recitatif” serve as a call for moral self-reflection and inspire
action not merely in matters of race. Sympathy, with its potential
rooted in reciprocity and imagination, provides room for reflecting
on and calling into question the truth of oneself, and the creative
impulse in imagination activated in the communicative situation
can propel a movement toward unknown others and
indeterminate future.
Key Words: Sympathy, Indeterminacy, Identification, Race, Disability,
Toni Morrison, “Recitatif”



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