Synopses & Reviews
More than two decades have passed since Chicago published the first volume of this groundbreaking work in the Religion and Postmodernism series. It quickly became influential across a wide range of disciplines and helped to make the tools of poststructuralist thought available to religious studies and theology, especially in the areas of late medieval and early modern mysticism.
Though the second volume remained in fragments at the time of his death, Michel de Certeau had the foresight to leave his literary executor detailed instructions for its completion, which formed the basis for the present work. Together, both volumes solidify Certeauandrsquo;s place as a touchstone of twentieth-century literature and philosophy, and continue his exploration of the paradoxes of historiography; the construction of social reality through practice, testimony, and belief; the theorization of speech in angelology and glossolalia; and the interplay of prose and poetry in discourses of the ineffable. This book will be of vital interest to scholars in religious studies, theology, philosophy, history, and literature.
In this incisive book, Michel de Certeau considers the uses to which social representation and modes of social behavior are put by individuals and groups, describing the tactics available to the common man for reclaiming his own autonomy from the all-pervasive forces of commerce, politics, and culture. In exploring the public meaning of ingeniously defended private meanings, de Certeau draws brilliantly on an immense theoretical literature to speak of an apposite use of imaginative literature.
It has been twenty-two years since the Press published the first volume of and#147;The Mystic Fableand#8221; in the Religion and Postmodernism series. The first volume quickly became influential across a wide range of humanistic disciplines and helped to make the tools of poststructuralist thought available to religious studies and theological contexts, especially in the areas of late medieval and early modern mysticism. Volume two has long been anticipated, but it had to wait for Certeauand#8217;s literary executor to gather the fragments after Certeauand#8217;s death, and compile them into a coherent book. Together, both volumes solidify Certeauand#8217;s place in French literary and philosophical circles, and continue his exploration of several interrelated areas, including the paradoxes of historiography, the construction of social reality through practice, testimony, and belief, the theorization of speech in angelology and glossalalia, and the interplay of prose and poetry in discourses of the ineffable. The book will be eagerly read and used by scholars in religious studies, theology, philosophy, history, and literary studies.
About the Author
Michel de Certeau (1925andndash;86) was a philosopher, historian, and Jesuit. He is the author of The Practice of Everyday Life, Heterologies: Discourse on the Other, and The Writing of History, in addition to The Mystic Fable, Volume One and The Possession at Loudun, both published by the University of Chicago Press.
Table of Contents
PART I: A VERY ORDINARY CULTURE
I. A Common Place: Ordinary Language
II. Popular Cultures: Ordinary Language
III. Making Do: Uses and Tactics
PART II: THEORIES OF THE ART OF PRACTICE
IV. Foucault and Bourdieu
V. The Arts of Theory
VI. Story Time
PART III: SPATIAL PRACTICES
VII. Walking in the City
VIII. Railway Navigation and Incarceration
IX. Spatial Stories
PART IV: Uses of Language
X. The Scriptural Economy
XI. Quotations of Voices
XII. Reading as Poaching
PART V: WAYS OF BELIEVING
XIII. Believing and Making People Believe
XIV. The Unnamable