From Now On…
Please note that the content of "From Now On" is derived from and applicable to the print edition of Dangerous Citizens. Treatment of parerga, footnotes, and other information varies in the web adaptation. Visit the Help page to read about using this site.
This is a text split into two parts. They do not take up the same space, although they both have things to tell, stories to recount and account for, histories that refuse to be forgotten. They bleed into one another; they cannot stand independently of one another. That was the greatest challenge I faced in writing this book: How could I allow these stories, which have been bleeding for so long (into each other, onto themselves, spilling out of all bounds), to retain their infectiousness, to stay there, crowding each other, while remaining singularly meaningful?
This is a book that tells a story and a history, simultaneously: the story is one of abjection, of multiple abjections, of miasmas, danger, and dehumanization. It is the story of the Greek Left, or, rather, of the Greek Leftist as a paradigmatic figure of abjection. Or, rather, of how the Greek Left has been constituted by the Greek state. It is the history and the story of how a zone of danger was instituted in the early years of the twentieth century and how it was both populated and inhabited by what came to be construed, understood, conjured up as “the Left.” The history is of how the run-of-the-mill democracy that Greece has been throughout the twentieth century, with breaks for the occasional dictatorship, through systematic ideological positions, managed to create a zone of danger that it then populated with this new paradigm of danger, the Greek Leftist. The first part is the story/history. The second part, parerga, is a shadow text to the main one. I would suggest that you familiarize yourselves with the parerga before you continue with the main text. You can read the two independently of each other; you can read the parerga as notes; or you can read them together.
In the printed version of this book, the parerga short enough to be set in the margins have been placed there, so that they can be read in spatial proximity to the text. They are keyed to the text by superscript number. Those too long for that treatment have been put in the back, with cross-reference in the text. This has resulted in two sets of numbering: in-text superscripts for parerga in the margins, and numbering by chapter (e.g. 1.1) for those in the back of the book. The intent of both sequences is the same—to open the possibility of a layered and somewhat aleatory reading experience, through which the reader can be repeatedly reminded of the many different voices and discourses brought together in the years of fieldwork and research done for this volume. The print version will be followed by an electronic version (www.dangerouscitizens.columbia.edu), prepared in conjunction with the Columbia Center for Digital Research and Scholarship, that will further explore new possibilities of reading via the unique opportunities made available in the electronic medium, including the addition of new visual and audio materials.
How you proceed from now on is up to you.