The Context of Contest

There is for me a very interesting accidental in the text of “Film as Dialogical Art: Bakhtin, Pragmatics and Film Criticism” by Janina Falkowska a paper presented at the 1991 “Interaction in Process” Colloquium of Comparative Literature in Canada and published in Volume XXII Number 2 (Fall 1992) of Comparative Literature in Canada – La Literature Comparée au Canada edited by Joyce Gogin. This is the bit that interests me:

The dialogical nature of Bakhtin’s concept of Word can be compared to a pragmatic understanding of the communication act with its sender, receiver, message and contest [sic].

One first believes that “contest” has been substituted for “context” and overlooked in the usual reliance on automated spellcheckers. But the passage continues and raises the spectre of struggle.

Bakhtin’s model seems to extend this concept beyond the rigorous perception of the communication act as existing in an actual speech situation. In its most general terms, the dialogic views language as social practice, as the struggle between language systems within a particular socio-historic context. To enter that struggle as a language user means to engage in speech as citation, for any linguistic utterance involves the adoption of, as well as the response to, prior speech. Speech as interlocution becomes an ideological form which both reveals and produces the subject’s position within a social system.

Leads me to pose the question of what type dialogical situation exists when the very context is contested.

And so for day 1823

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