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Introduction: Exceptionality

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The Introduction offers a detailed overview of Agamben’s theory of the state of exception and an exploration of how the present book interprets and uses his concepts in its analysis of sex, time, and space in contemporary fiction. It begins by offering an examination of Agamben’s theory of the state of exception, paying particular attention to the role of time and space therein. Correlatively, this chapter opens up the concept of exceptional sex through a reading of Agamben’s writings on sex in his work on the state of exception. Importantly, this chapter explores the expansive nature of the concept of exceptionality and how it may be used in literary studies to enhance the understanding of narratology and the practice of reading itself. It closes with a summary of the chapters.


  • Concentration Camp
  • Klein Bottle
  • Queer Theory
  • Sovereign Power
  • Bare Life

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  • DOI: 10.1057/978-1-137-48589-2_1
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  1. 1.

    As of spring 2016, the Homo Sacer series also includes the following volumes: The Kingdom and the Glory: For a Theological Genealogy of Economy and Government (2007); The Sacrament of Language: An Archaeology of the Oath (2008); Opus Dei: An Archaeology of Duty (2012); The Highest Poverty: Monastic Rules and Form-of-Life (2011); and most recently, L’uso dei corpi (2014; Adam Kotsko’s English translation was published as this present book was going to press). In this book, I focus primarily on Homo Sacer, Remnants of Auschwitz, and State of Exception, as these works provide the most rigorous exploration of the qualities and topology of the state of exception itself.

  2. 2.

    In Blind Date: Sex and Philosophy (2003), Anne Dufourmantelle lyrically claims that sex and philosophy are themselves brought together by their fascination with borders and limits, writing: ‘here is where philosophy and sex are in harmony, on the shores of birth and death, waiting and forgetting, patience and rage’ (2007, p. 100). Significantly, in her introduction to Blind Date, ‘The Stealth Pulse of Philosophy’, Avital Ronell sees the relationship between philosophy and sex that Dufourmantelle’s work addresses in exceptional terms, proposing:

    It would be best first to review the internal split that governs the scene of our inquiry—the state of exception that philosophy harbors within itself, over which it divides its most crucially diverted properties, ceaselessly in dispute. According to the work before us, the fate of thinking is bound up in the impossible relation to ‘sex’ that philosophy, in its own dispossessing way, maintains. (p. xiv)

    Dufourmantelle’s exploration of philosophy’s state of exception—sex—provides many insights into the relations between sex, philosophy, and thought. Consequently, Blind Date can be seen as an intertext to this present book and, where relevant, I touch upon and make evident the relations between my work on exceptional sex and literature and Dufourmantelle’s work on the exceptional relation between sex and philosophy.

  3. 3.

    In his essay ‘Beyond Human Rights’ in Means Without End: Notes on Politics (1996), Agamben hyphenates the verb ‘in-determine’ (2000, p. 25), but he also retains the more conventional noun form ‘indetermination’ in Homo Sacer (1998, p. 164). For the sake of consistency, I have retained these two separate forms throughout.

  4. 4.

    Agamben’s use of the Leyden jar is somewhat less obvious than his references to the Möbius strip and the Klein bottle, but it would seem that spatial indetermination is effected in the Leyden jar either by the way in which a metal rod goes into and through the jar, thus being both inside and outside, or by the near-connection of the foil that lines the inside and the outside of the jar.

  5. 5.

    For Agamben’s references to the idea of suspension, see, for example, Homo Sacer (pp. 168, 169, and 175) and State of Exception (pp. 3, 33, 41, 60, and 64).

  6. 6.

    The quotation at the end of this passage comes from Primo Levi. In Remnants of Auschwitz, Agamben refers to two versions of this passage. In the first, Levi writes:

    It is a dream within other dreams…I’m alone at the center of a gray, cloudy emptiness, and at once I know what it means, I know that I’ve always known it: I am once again in the camp, and nothing outside the camp was true. The rest—family, flowering nature, home—was a brief respite, a trick of the senses. Now this inner dream, this dream of peace, is over; and in the outer dream, which continues relentlessly, I hear the sound of a voice I know well: the sound of one word, not a command, but a brief, submissive word. It is the order at dawn in Auschwitz, a foreign word, a word that is feared and expected: ‘Get up,’ ‘Wstawac’. (2008, p. 101)

    The second version is from Levi’s poem ‘At an Uncertain Hour’ (1984), which, for Agamben, ‘has the form not of a dream, but of prophetic certainty’ (p. 102). He quotes Levi as follows:

    In savage nights, we dreamt teeming, violent dreams with our body and soul: to go back, to eat—to tell. Until we heard the brief and submissive order of dawn: Wstawac. And our hearts were broken in our chests.

    Now we have found our homes again; our bellies are full; we have finished telling our tales. It’s time. Soon we will once again hear the foreign order: Wstawac. (p. 102)

  7. 7.

    Similar temporal upheavals and indeterminations of course characterise Agamben’s theory of messianic time, which, as he explains in The Time That Remains: A Commentary on the Letter to the Romans (2000), is ‘the time that contracts itself and begins to end… the time that remains between time and its end’ (2005b, p. 62). For Agamben, this time is not the end of time but a type of remnant; it is ‘the time that remains between these two times [chronological and eternal], when the division of time is itself divided’ (p. 62, my emphasis). Significantly, in The Time That Remains, the state of exception is the paradigm through which Agamben explains the status of the law—its suspension and fulfilment—in the time of the messianic event. Moreover, in his discussion of the way the Church has lost its messianic vocation and has become an earthly institution in The Church and the Kingdom (2010), Agamben argues:

    The crises—the states of permanent exception and emergency—that the governments of the world continually proclaim are in reality a secularized parody of the Church’s incessant deferral of the Last Judgement. With the eclipse of the messianic experience of the culmination of the law and of time comes an unprecedented hypertrophy of law—one that, under the guise of legislating everything, betrays its legitimacy through legalistic excess. (2012, p. 40)

    Whilst Agamben’s theory of messianic time is significant and fecund, my focus in this book is limited to the specific spatiotemporal structures and phenomenological qualities of the state of exception as he delineates it in its secular, worldly form. For those wanting an in-depth knowledge of Agamben’s theory of messianic temporality, and how he connects the messianic and the state of exception, see in particular ‘The Fourth Day’ section of The Time That Remains (2005b, pp. 59–87) and The Church and the Kingdom (2012, pp. 35–41).

  8. 8.

    See Homo Sacer (pp. 166–7) for Agamben’s discussion of the historical debate over whether it was the Spanish in Cuba in 1869 or the English during the second Boer War (1899–1902) who established the first concentration camps.

  9. 9.

    The reader may wish to see Clemens’s essay for his incisive account of the underlying role psychoanalytic concepts and structures play in Agamben’s work, in which Clemens also analyses the interesting temporality of melancholy, arguing: ‘melancholy is not, paradoxically, a backward-looking phenomenon, but rather authentically forward-looking, or, more precisely, subsists in a temporality skewed between already-over and not-yet’ (para. 26).

  10. 10.

    Mediaeval erotic poetry in particular is an area Agamben returns to throughout his work. See, for instance, the essays ‘Comedy’ (1978) and ‘Corn: From Anatomy to Poetics’ (1996) in The End of the Poem (1999 [1996], pp. 1–22 and pp. 23–42).

  11. 11.

    For Agamben, pornography offers the potential—albeit one that is ultimately thwarted by capitalist consumption—for new pleasures, new bodies, and ‘a new collective use of sexuality’ (‘In Praise of Profanation’, 2007b, p. 91). In his analyses of gesture and profanation, for instance, he argues that the very way in which pornographic films capture the sexual behaviour of the actors diverts it from its intended end in the film and opens it up to new and other potential ends. Moreover, the means–end relationship of sex in the film is deactivated, and the filmed, ‘captured’ sex becomes a pure means—a type of means without end, but not an end in itself. Fascinating and significant, Agamben’s work on pornography is, however, ultimately indebted to the visual nature of film: the way pornography captures sex via the camera, and in particular the eroticism of the female face turned to the viewer, is essential to the potential ‘erotic communication’ (p. 90) Agamben sees in pornography. Indeed, in his discussion of how pornography ‘shows the unremediably episodic character of every pleasure’ in Idea of Prose, he claims: ‘this is why it is only in representing the pleasure of the woman, inscribed solely in her face, that pornography achieves its intention’ (1995, p. 74, my emphases). Agamben’s focus on the visual marks a further distinction between porn film stars and characters in novels, and as such, raises the question of if and how the written word can offer similar forms of inoperativity, deactivation, and pure means as the pornographic film. This question is, however, beyond the scope of this present study. For an interesting discussion of pornography and Agamben’s theory of the temporality of the cairós, see Cesare Casarino, ‘Pornocairology: Or, The Communist Clinamen of Pornography’ (2006).

  12. 12.

    Interestingly, in ‘Bare Life, Bearing Witness: Auschwitz and the Pornography of Horror’ (2004), J.M. Bernstein argues that Agamben’s theory of witnessing in Remnants of Auschwitz is itself pornographic in its methodology and in its effects. Moreover, Bernstein examines the intricate interplay between nature and culture that takes place, he argues, during sexual activity, and contends:

    all human sexual practices worthy of the name are transgressive, broaching or breaking the boundaries of culture (bios) and performatively revealing the interchange between culture and nature (zoe) [sic] … all human sexual practices worthy of the name contain moments of objectification, aggression, dismemberment and animal solitariness, and it is now via those moments alone that our animal bodies can routinely receive an emphatic moment of independence from cultural norms, or, what is the same, it is now only through those moments, through the elliptical practices of dismemberment that we call ‘making love’ with its caressing and its biting, its focus on now this or that body part, it [sic] wild abandon and ecstatic jouissance, that embodiment itself can be non-transitively experienced as the source of a claim. (p. 9)

    In Bernstein’s argument, however, ‘we only experience the claim of our living body on the cusp of its mortal dismemberment.… pornography brings us to the limit of culture where our undignified animality, the natural beneath the cultural, is isolated, displayed and remembered’ (p. 9, my emphasis). For Bernstein, then, ‘worthy’ sex always involves and in-determines—transgresses as he sees it—the dichotomy of culture and nature. Sex is a privileged site in which the interrelationship between bios and zoē is exposed, and we must understand this, he claims, ‘if we are to make sense of why human beings so utterly and uncontrollably care about sex, invest in it, make its often predictable, routine even boring pleasures and pains something for which all else … might be sacrificed’ (pp. 8–9).

  13. 13.

    In Blind Date, Dufourmantelle argues that sex and exceptional animalisation are intrinsically connected, writing: ‘sexuality, to the extent that it signified excess, the nonhumanized, brought back into view, in the characteristics of animals, that which casts us out of bounds, outside the civilized sphere, the human compact, the polis. Sex was not originally interpreted as an evil, then, but as one of the appetites through which our always latent inhumanity comes to be engulfed’ (2007, p. 29). See (pp. 45–6) for her invocation of Dionysus and the Bacchanalia in relation to indetermination and sex.

  14. 14.

    Other noteworthy shorter works that focus on Agamben’s state of exception and sex in literature in a variety of different ways include: Andrew Asibong’s essay on two French writers and the ‘obscenely sexualized’ female character that materialises when bare life comes about through sex, ‘Mulier Sacra: Marie Chauvet, Marie Darrieussecq and the Sexual Metamorphoses of “Bare Life”’ (2003); James Kuzner’s ‘Unbuilding the City: Coriolanus and the Birth of Republican Rome’ (2007), in which, using the work of queer theorists Leo Bersani and Jonathan Goldberg, Kuzner argues that Coriolanus exists in a sexual state of exception and that sodomy provides a way to escape this state and form a new politics; and Christopher Breu’s ‘The Novel Enfleshed: Naked Lunch and the Literature of Materiality’ (2011), wherein he provides an economic interpretation of the state of exception in his reading of the body (exploited as well as posthuman) and ‘deregulated spaces of hyperexploitation’ (p. 214) in William Burroughs’ infamous 1959 novel. An area of literary criticism that has also explored Agamben’s state of exception and sex is science fiction, and readers interested in this may wish to see, for instance, Aida A. Hozic’s ‘Forbidden Places, Tempting Spaces, And the Politics of Desire’ (2003). For an essay that focuses not on the state of exception but on Agamben’s theory of pleasure and the instant in the work of science fiction writer Christopher Priest, see Matthew Wolf-Meyer’s ‘“The Event” and “The Woman”, or Notes on the Temporality of Sex’ (2005).

  15. 15.

    When using terms such as ‘the animal’, ‘animality’, and ‘animalisation’, it is imperative, as Matthew Calarco stresses in Zoographies: The Question of the Animal from Heidegger to Derrida (2008), that one bear in mind the complexities and occlusions involved in such designations. These include, for instance, the erroneous homogeneity humans often assign the animal kingdom as well as any originary binary between animal and human. Within this present work, such terms are invoked to characterise bestial, exceptional figures who occupy a position between human and beast.

  16. 16.

    In ‘Beyond Human Rights’, Agamben provides an interesting example of how the concept of exceptionality may be used for positive political ends. Discussing the Israel–Palestine conflict, he reflects: ‘one of the options taken into consideration for solving the problem of Jerusalem is that it become—simultaneously and without any territorial partition—the capital of two different states. The paradoxical condition of reciprocal extraterritoriality (or, better yet, aterritoriality) that would thus be implied could be generalized as a model of new international relations’ (2000, p. 24). For Agamben, such ‘space[s] would coincide neither with any of the homogeneous national territories nor with their topographical sum, but would rather act on them by articulating and perforating them topologically as in the Klein bottle or in the Möbius strip’ (p. 25). Furthermore, the positive potential of states of exception is, as Agamben shows, evident in the traditional ‘anomic feasts’ (2005a, p. 72) or arranged periods of misrule, in which ‘men dress up and behave like animals, masters serve their slaves, males and females exchange roles, and criminal behavior is considered licit or, in any case, not punishable’ (p. 71). Following the analysis of Karl Meuli, Agamben argues that such feasts ‘celebrate and parodically replicate the anomie through which the law applies itself to chaos and to life only on the condition of making itself, in the state of exception, life and living chaos’ (p. 73).

  17. 17.

    For example, in In a Queer Time and Place: Transgender Bodies, Subcultural Lives (2005), Judith Halberstam writes: ‘for the purpose of this book, “queer” refers to nonnormative logics and organizations of community, sexual identity, embodiment, and activity in space and time’ (p. 6). Similarly, in No Future: Queer Theory and the Death Drive (2004), Lee Edelman claims that truth and queerness are ‘irreducibly linked to the “aberrant or atypical,” to what chafes against “normalization,”’ (2007, p. 6). Edelman does, however, also provide a more intricate example of the type of shifting articulations used to posit queer theory’s (non-)oppositional relation to the norm, when he writes about ‘the impossible project of a queer oppositionality that would oppose itself to the structural determinations of politics as such, which is also to say, that would oppose itself to the logic of opposition’ (p. 4). As Edelman elaborates, ‘this paradoxical formulation suggests a refusal—the appropriately perverse refusal that characterizes queer theory—of every substantialization of identity, which is always oppositionally defined’ (p. 4). The relationship between queer theory and the norm has recently received a compelling and in-depth analysis in Robyn Wiegman’s fascinating and provocative work Object Lessons (2012). Analysing the ‘slide from queer theory to an interdisciplinary field name Queer Studies’ (p. 305), Wiegman argues that Queer Studies is dependent on the norm as a result of its desire to articulate antinormative sexualities. Consequently, she argues, the disciplinary field oversimplifies heteronormativity and becomes itself normalised, trading in ‘antinormative normativities’ (p. 326). For a recent attempt to formulate, or indeed return to, a form of queer theory that is not dependent on normativity/antinormativity, see Claire Colebrook’s Sex After Life: Essays on Extinction, Volume 2 (2014). Interestingly, Wiegman herself anticipates and problematises such moves, writing:

    So even if this discussion might lead to the conclusion that Queer Studies must now reinvent itself, either by shifting its sights from normativity or giving normativity a far more historical specification, or by opening its idealization of antinormativity to critique, there will be no way to arrive into a newer version of the field cleansed of strategic foreclosure. Like it or not (and mostly, I think, we do like it), fields of study, regardless of their content, are identity formations precisely because that is what disciplinarity confers. (2012, p. 335)

    For further reflections on the relationship between queer theory and antinormativity, see Robyn Wiegman and Elizabeth A. Wilson’s 2015 special edition of differences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies 26 (1).

  18. 18.

    On temporality and, to some extent, space in queer theory, see, for example: Judith Halberstam, In a Queer Time and Place: Transgender Bodies, Subcultural Lives (2005); Elizabeth Freeman’s introduction to the special edition of GLQ (2007) on queer temporality; Carolyn Dinshaw, Lee Edelman, et al., ‘Theorizing Queer Temporalities’ (2007); Edelman, No Future: Queer Theory and the Death Drive (2007); Elizabeth Freeman, Time Binds: Queer Temporalities, Queer Histories (2010); Ben Davies and Jana Funke (eds), Sex, Gender and Time in Fiction and Culture (2011); and. E.L. McCallum and Mikko Tuhkanen (eds), Queer Times, Queer Becomings (2011).

  19. 19.

    Tim Dean raises the very question of taxonomy—as well as the positive (un)critical championing of ‘queer’ time—in his essay ‘Bareback Time’ (2011). Discussing Carolyn Dinshaw’s essay ‘Temporalities’ (2007), Dean writes:

    At the end of her superb reading of The Book of Margery Kempe, however, Dinshaw concedes that ‘there is nothing intrinsically positive about the experience, or indeed the condition, of multiple temporalities—which condition, I would argue, defines life on this earth’. She’s right, but her concession gives me pause. In their enthusiasm to embrace asynchronous temporality as definitively queer, too many critics fail to acknowledge that there is nothing intrinsically positive about this experience and, indeed, that it readily occasions anxiety and suffering. Further, if the experience of inhabiting multiple temporalities ‘defines life on this earth’—or has been a condition of Western modernity since at least the French Revolution—then the question inevitably must arise of how it qualifies as distinctively queer. Debates about the specificity of the term queer have animated queer theory since its inception, and I have no wish to rehearse them here. What concerns me at this point is a sense that scholarship on queer temporalities tends to avoid any clear-eyed assessment of the subjective costs—especially in terms of anxiety—attendant upon living with temporal dehiscence. Indeed, it is striking how the new ‘affect studies’ engages with just about every feeling except anxiety. (p. 80)

  20. 20.

    For example: in her introduction to the special edition of GLQ on queer temporality Elizabeth Freeman argues, ‘the essays collected here suggest that this sensation of asynchrony can be viewed as a queer phenomenon’ (2007, p. 159); in In a Queer Time and Place, Judith Halberstam describes one of her main subjects, Brenda Teena, as being ‘literally and figuratively out of time and out of place’ (2005, p. 16); and, taken to its logical conclusion, Lee Edelman’s call for queer subjects to embrace the death drive can be seen as a desire for those subjects to stop being in time and, as it were, to move out of time.

  21. 21.

    In The Philosophy of Agamben (2008), for example, Catherine Mills argues that Agamben’s work suffers from ‘gender-blindness’ (p. 114). Likewise, Penelope Deutscher critiques the dearth of women’s bodies and reproductivity in Agamben’s work on the state of exception in her essay ‘The Inversion of Exceptionality: Foucault, Agamben, and “Reproductive Rights”’ (2008).

  22. 22.

    The work carried out by queer readings of supposedly ‘straight’ texts, as well as efforts such as Richard Fantina’s to ‘make queer heterosexuality culturally legible’ (2006, p. 9), is immensely valuable. For examples of such readings, see, for instance: Calvin Thomas (ed.), Straight with a Twist: Queer Theory and the Subject of Heterosexuality (2000); and Richard Fantina, Straight Writ Queer: Non-Normative Expressions of Heterosexuality in Literature (2006).

  23. 23.

    Despite attempts to broaden the meaning of ‘queer’ beyond gay and lesbian sexualities and to challenge the configuration of the in/out, straight/queer configuration, there can still be a critical tendency to make an overly straightforward alignment between textual space, writing, and queerness. See, for example, Calvin Thomas, ‘Foreword: Crossing the Streets, Queering the Sheets, or: “Do You Want to Save the Changes to Queer Heterosexuality?”’ (2006, pp. 4–5). More critically, Judith Halberstam recognises the privilege of gay men in discussions of sexuality and space in In a Queer Time and Place, but then (understandably given her focus) turns her attention to queer communities.

  24. 24.

    In his interview ‘The Spatial Arts’ (1990) with Peter Brunette and David Wills, Jacques Derrida also gestures towards the need to rethink perversion when, discussing his relationship with words, he explains: ‘So I am very much in love with words, and as someone who is in love with words I treat them as bodies that contain their own perversity—a word I don’t like too much because it is too conventional—let’s say the regulated disorder of words’ (1994, p. 20).

  25. 25.

    With characteristic colourfulness, Tim Dean specifically frames the problem of measuring sexual pleasure in relation to the norm in his essay ‘The Biopolitics of Pleasure’ (2012), contending:

    It is, in fact, impossible to adjudicate how much pleasure is too much without a highly normative sense of what the human body is and what its capacities are. What may seem like way too much to you (‘how can you possibly take all that up your butt?’) may not be too much for me—and vice versa. The assumption that certain pleasures are excessive or death driven tends to emerge when the pleasures in question are those of which one secretly disapproves (for instance, nonnormative sex). Often a cryptonormativism, rather than ethics or politics, motivates the diagnosis of jouissance and its accompanying critical demystifications. (pp. 484–5)

  26. 26.

    More generally and less poetically, Agamben often turns to language—its nature and structure—as a way to discuss and analyse the state of exception. Most significantly, Agamben sees language itself in exceptional terms, writing in Homo Sacer, for instance:

    Hegel was the first to truly understand the presuppositional structure thanks to which language is at once outside and inside itself and the immediate (the nonlinguistic) reveals itself to be nothing but a presupposition of language. ‘Language,’ he wrote in the Phenomenology of Spirit, ‘is the perfect element in which interiority is as external as exteriority is internal’. We have seen that only the sovereign decision on the state of exception opens the space in which it is possible to trace borders between inside and outside and in which determinate rules can be assigned to determinate territories. In exactly the same way, only language as the pure potentiality to signify, withdrawing itself from every concrete instance of speech, divides the linguistic from the nonlinguistic and allows for the opening of areas of meaningful speech in which certain terms correspond to certain denotations. Language is the sovereign who, in a permanent state of exception, declares that there is nothing outside language and that language is always beyond itself. The particular structure of law has its foundation in this presuppositional structure of human language. It expresses the bond of inclusive exclusion to which a thing is subject because of the fact of being in language, of being named. To speak [dire] is, in this sense, always, to ‘speak the law,’ ius dicere. (1998, p. 21)

    For further discussions of force and application as they play out in language and the state of exception, see State of Exception (2005a, pp. 36–40, 60).

  27. 27.

    In his excellent follow-up to States of Exception in the Contemporary Novel, Narrative Care: Biopolitics and the Novel (2013), Arne De Boever provides a highly perceptive and penetrating analysis of the novel’s complicity with, and critique of, governmentality and biopolitics. In this pharmacological study of the novel, De Boever adopts an approach similar to the one I outline above when he analyses the relationship between authors and characters. Focusing on authors rather than narrators, De Boever argues that authors have sovereign power and governmental control over their characters, and that authors and readers desire full knowledge of characters’ lives—a knowledge they are, however, unable to attain. Working within this framework, De Boever provocatively contends that the novel can be seen as a type of concentration camp, ‘in which the author’s law coincides to the letter with the lives of the individuals being described’ (2014, p. 69), a sadistic theatre of bare life and a life-support machine, with ‘character-life’ (p. 42) being an instance of bare life. Whilst I also argue that characters are controlled by a sovereign-like power, unlike De Boever, my analysis focuses on the relationship between narrators, readers, and characters—the narrator’s control over his or her narrative and the reader, the reader’s exceptional relation to the textual set—and, in the final analysis, the reader’s role in character ontology. I am, unsurprisingly, fully aware that writers write texts (at least in some way and to some degree), but for Agamben, the author is a gestural figure, a figure of withdrawal (see Chapter 4). For this reason, and my interest in formal narrative relations, I limit my focus to texts and the practice of reading.

  28. 28.

    In an effort to limit confusion, Genette explains his use of the words ‘metanarrative’ and ‘metadiegetic’ as follows:

    the prefix meta- obviously connotes here, as in ‘metalanguage,’ the transition to the second degree: the metanarrative is a narrative within the narrative, the metadiegesis is the universe of this second narrative.… We must admit, however, that this term functions in a way opposite to that of its model in logic and linguistics: metalanguage is a language in which one speaks of another language. (p. 228, n. 41)

    To simplify matters, I use the term ‘metanarrative’ to designate a narrative that refers to its own status or quality, and the term ‘metadiegetic’ to refer to a narrative within a narrative.

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Davies, B. (2016). Introduction: Exceptionality. In: Sex, Time, and Space in Contemporary Fiction. Palgrave Macmillan, London.

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