Since the meaning of cultural products depends not only on the context in which they were created, but also on those in which they travel, it is important to attempt to do the impossible, that is, to assess them from multiple perspectives simultaneously. For instance, what could be viewed as containment in one place and time—a representation of Reinaldo Arenas during a particularly reactionary period in the United States ends up creating more of a burden in another context, Castro’s post-Soviet Cuba. As discrepant cosmopolitanisms acknowledge their relation to the maneuverings of the market economy, they are able to address the enclosures and strictures on which disciplines are constructed. This chapter considers the echoes of the institutionalization of critique within the institutionalization of madness. Following the paradigms of intellectual and artistic figuration set forth in the previous chapters, we can begin to analyze unusual sites of conformation and contestation. Our focus throughout this book shifts from intellectual self-fashioning in itself to the interpretation of these authorial maneuvers in diverse contexts. It increasingly considers the significance of diverse visual cultures on the literary realm. The episode before us manifests the ethical parameters of cosmopolitanism, of embracing the flexibility that such a position assumes, as a way of coming to terms with certain disciplinary limitations.
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