SLL4 Mapping the Threshold: Essays in Liminal Analysis
Nancy Bredendick (ed.), 2004
ISBN 84-931843-2-2

The charge to the invited speakers at the Third Seminar on Liminality and Text, held at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid in the spring of 2003, was to discover and delineate the properties of the limen. Their response, as can be seen in the essays collected here, configures the limen in all kinds of shapes and dimensions: doorsill, borderline, border strip, shoreline, space, gap, and phase. Whatever the configuration, however, in all the essays, the dynamic quality of the limen stands out. It is a space or a phase characterized by “dazzling energy, dizzying transformation”; “fructile chaos, a striving after new forms”; it is “unstable, unfinished, ever changing”; it is “fluid, multivocal, empowering”; and it is “ambivalent, polluting, and dangerous to norm governed structures”. In essay after essay, speakers describe the limen as a fertile place for creativity and change, if not the very seat of such activity – all of which bolsters the notion that what is significant about the limen is not just its position or shape but also its disruptive force and generating power.