In an essay published in 1979, as a postface to a new edition of Moroccan author Abdelkebir Khatibi’s novel La mémoire tatouée, Roland Barthes summarizes his position on non-Western cultures:
Some people seek to define difference using the absolute Other—namely, the East (Zen, Daoism, Buddhism). But what we need to learn is not how to copy a model—the language barrier makes this impossible—but how to create our own “heterological” language made up of a “whole mess” [...
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