Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Recount! as Request in Don Quixote

On recounting and accounting, see Volume II, Book IV: "call me to account," "give an account," "no jokes to repeated," "resurrection from this present death" (942; 943)

"incessant wheel," "The life of man alone runs lightly to its end, unlike the circle of time, without hope of renewal, except in another life, which knows no bounds" (938)

"Cid Hamet recounts" (931)

On doubles, see:
See also the student who writes two books (728-29) who repeats the galley slave who is also writing two books, as is Cervantes (Galatea and Don Quixote, which is in two parts). On the student's books, see p. 712.

On omissions and additions, see the two passages below:
"The author here minutely describes Don Diego's house, gives an inventory of the furniture usually contained in the house of a rich country gentleman: but, the translators of this history have thought it advisable not to mention these and such other particular matters, as being rather foreign to the main scope of this history,in which truth has more energy than needless and languid digressions." (678)
The narrator here follows Don Quixote's earlier advice about what does or does not belong in a history.

The student wrote a third "performance" which he calls "The supplement to Polydore Virgil: adding what "many things of great importance, which Polydore has omitted" (712)

He who translated this sublime history from the original, composed by its first author Cid Hamet Benengeli, says, that turning to the chapter which treats of the adventure of the case, he found this observation written on the margin, in the hand-writing of the said Hamet. (727)

"I have often said what I am now going to repeat, answered Don Quixote" (680)

An economy of requesting and reception works through these additions and omissions that attend recounting, calling into question what is a generous gift, a supplement, and what is madness, error, folly, digression. What is given to be read? When is a gift not a gift? What is being requested? How is the request met? Is it met? How does one get to (mis)read by recounting (and retrieving, recovering and re/collecting)? To write? To publish? What is the reward? Should there be a reward?
"With this advice, did the knight, as it were, sum up the process of his madness, which, however, was made more manifest in this addition." (685)

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