Continuity and contiguity.

Being Singular Plural page 5 and elsewhere. This invocation of touching as ‘contiguity’ (being next to, connected with, i.e. contact) rather than continuity. An important idea for Nancy that comes across also in the small but beautiful volume Noli Mi Tangere.

Mona Lisa handsEchoes of Merleau-Ponty’s discussion of the hands touching each other (as John suggested, in the act of praying, although we could also think of Leonardo’s famous drawing study of the hands that don’t touch, or the Mona Lisa’s hands that do – pictured left). It does seem that there are many treatments of hands in Da Vinci. Merleau-Ponty’s discussion occurs in The Visible and the Invisible in a chapter called ‘The Intertwining – The Chiasm’ where he articulates his thoery of ‘flesh’ (La Chair). But also, I failed to mention, quite famously in Luce Irigaray’s Speculum of the Other Woman, where she critiques Merleau-Ponty’s concept and counterposes the ‘lips’ touching each other instead of the hands.


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