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Tactile PoeticsTouch and Contemporary Writing$
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Sarah Jackson

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780748685318

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748685318.001.0001

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29 Tangos

(p.80) Chapter 5 Dis-tanz
Tactile Poetics

Sarah Jackson

Edinburgh University Press

Written in 29 tangos, this chapter provides an analysis of the spacing and withdrawal that always interrupt touch. Thinking through the relationship between distance and dancing, and developing Jacques Derrida's discussion of distanz in Spurs and ‘Choreographies’, it examines Anne Carson's book-length poem, The Beauty of the Husband – A Fictional Essay in 29 Tangos. Considering the intimate distanz or ‘not-touching’ at the heart of the original tango dances in Buenos Aires, the chapter demonstrates that Carson's intimacy is not without its own interruptions, destabilising our experience of intimate contact. Drawing on Carson's discussion of Sappho in Eros the Bittersweet, it argues that interruption in The Beauty of the Husband is inscribed within its poetic form, which is punctuated by unfinished sentences, hyphens and parentheses.

Keywords:   dancing, distance, interruption, proximity, tango, tender, Anne Carson, Jacques Derrida

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