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THE SEDUCTION OF WORDS AND FLESH AND THE DESIRE OF GOD: A POSTSTRUCTURALIST READING OF JOHN 1:1, 14 AND THE PILLOW BOOK

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image of Biblical Interpretation

This paper looks at John 1:1, 14 and Peter Greenaway's film The Pillow Book with the intention of reading afresh the Incarnation of the Word in the former and the Inscription of the Flesh in the latter, while focusing on the seduction of word(s) and flesh, the dynamics of speech and writing, and the desire of God, through poststructuralist theory. It investigates the relationship between text and image, and text, image, and reader, and it exposes the ocular-erotic character of reading. Connected to one of the most valuable collections of writings in Japanese literature, namely The Pillow Book of Sei Shonagon, Greenaway's film treats the 'delights of the flesh and the delights of literature' as indistinguishable from each other. This paper defends the idea that the Incarnation exposes the reciprocity of desire of God: God desires our flesh as much as we desire his Word; and it identifies the Incarnation as the hymen which both unites and separates the human and the divine, the immanent and the transcendent, the flesh and the word, the audience and the book, this world and the other, foreplay and orgasm.

10.1163/15685150360495589
/content/journals/10.1163/15685150360495589
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/content/journals/10.1163/15685150360495589
2003-01-01
2016-12-06

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