Journal of Romance Studies

Literature and mathematics: the difference

Journal of Romance Studies (2007), 7, (3), 7–25.

Abstract

This article approaches the difference between literature and mathematics by considering the role it played in debates about the place in literature of difference in general over the last few decades. This leads on to questions about which literary texts are most likely to invoke mathematical elements. For instance, is there a correlation between gender or genre and an interest in mathematics? Do the texts which are most concerned with the mathematical tend to play down or to emphasize the difference between it and literature, to figure the relationship between the two as a difference or as an equation? And, especially, are such (mathematical) questions about generalizations useful, pertinent, desirable in the study of literary texts?

Access Token
£25.00
If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Beckett, Samuel (1951) Molloy (Paris: Minuit). Molloy Google Scholar

Beckett, Samuel (1959) Molloy, Malone Dies, The Unnamable (London: John Calder). Molloy, Malone Dies, The Unnamable Google Scholar

Beckett, Samuel (1988) Watt (London: Picador). Watt Google Scholar

Cervantes, Miguel de (1950) [1605–15] Don Quixote (London: Penguin). Don Quixote Google Scholar

Cixous, Hélène (1986a) [1969] Dedans (Paris: des femmes). Dedans Google Scholar

Cixous, Hélène (1986b) Inside, trans. Carol Barko (New York: Schocken). Inside Google Scholar

Cixous, Hélène and Mireille Calle-Gruber (1994) Hélène Cixous, photos de racines (Paris: des femmes). Hélène Cixous, photos de racines Google Scholar

Cixous, Hélène and Mireille Calle-Gruber (1997) Hélène Cixous, Rootprints, trans. Eric Prenowitz (London and New York: Routledge). Hélène Cixous, Rootprints Google Scholar

Derrida, Jacques (1974) [1962] Introduction à ‘L’Origine de la géométrie’ de Husserl, 2ndedition (Paris: Presses Universitaires de France). Introduction à ‘L’Origine de la géométrie’ de Husserl Google Scholar

Derrida, Jacques (1983) ‘The time of a thesis: punctuations’, in Philosophy in France Today, ed. Alan Montefiore (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press), 34–50. The time of a thesis: punctuations Philosophy in France Today 34 50 Google Scholar

Derrida, Jacques (1989) Edmund Husserl’s ‘Origin of Geometry’: An Introduction, trans., preface and afterword John P. Leavey Jr (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press). Edmund Husserl’s ‘Origin of Geometry’: An Introduction Google Scholar

Derrida, Jacques (2000) ‘H. C. pour la vie, c’est à dire…’, in Hélène Cixous: croisées d’une œuvre, Actes du Colloque de Cerisy-la-Salle, ed. Mireille Calle-Gruber (Paris: Galilée). H. C. pour la vie, c’est à dire… Hélène Cixous: croisées d’une œuvre Google Scholar

Derrida, Jacques (2004) ‘Countersignature’, trans. Mairéad Hanrahan, in Genet, special issue, Paragraph 27.2, 7–42. Countersignature Genet 27.2 7 42 Google Scholar

Hamon, Philippe (1993) Du descriptif (Paris: Hachette). Du descriptif Google Scholar

Hardy, G. H. (1969) A Mathematician’s Apology, foreword by C. P. Snow (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press). A Mathematician’s Apology Google Scholar

Joyce, James (1975) Finnegans Wake (London: Faber and Faber). Finnegans Wake Google Scholar

Lispector, Clarice (1960) ‘O crime do professor de matemática’, in Laços de família (Rio de Janeiro: Editora Nova Fronteira), 137–45. O crime do professor de matemática Laços de família 137 45 Google Scholar

Lispector, Clarice (1985) ‘The crime of the mathematics professor’, in Family Ties, trans. and afterword Giovanni Pontiero (Manchester: Carcanet), 114–21. The crime of the mathematics professor Family Ties 114 21 Google Scholar

Mallarmé, Stéphane (1945) Œuvres complètes (Paris: Gallimard, Bibliothèque de la Pléiade). Œuvres complètes Google Scholar

Montaigne, Michel de (1962) Œuvres complètes (Paris: Gallimard, Bibliothèque de la Pléiade). Œuvres complètes Google Scholar

Ponge, Francis (1992) Nouveau nouveau recueil 1967–84 (Paris: Gallimard). Nouveau nouveau recueil 1967–84 Google Scholar

Roubaud, Jacques (1986) Quelque chose noir (Paris: Gallimard). Quelque chose noir Google Scholar

Rousseau, Jean-Jacques (1959) Œuvres complètes I (Les Confessions et autres textes autobiographiques) (Paris: Gallimard, Bibliothèque de la Pléiade). Œuvres complètes I (Les Confessions et autres textes autobiographiques) Google Scholar

Sheringham, Michael (1988) ‘Visual autobiography: diagrams in Stendhal’s Vie de Henry Brulard’, Paragraph 11.3, 249–73. Visual autobiography: diagrams in Stendhal’s Vie de Henry Brulard Paragraph 11.3 249 73 Google Scholar

Stendhal (1982) Œuvres intimes II (Paris: Gallimard, Bibliothèque de la Pléiade). Œuvres intimes II Google Scholar

Sterne, Laurence (1967) [1759–67] The Life & Opinions of Tristram Shandy (Harmondsworth: Penguin). The Life & Opinions of Tristram Shandy Google Scholar

If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Details

Author details

Hanrahan, Mairéad