CFP - Glossator: Practice and Theory of the Commentary (March 2010)

full name / name of organization: 
Nicola Masciandaro, CUNY
contact email: 


The editors of Glossator: Practice and Theory of the Commentary ( invite submissions of COMMENTARIES for the next open issue, Fall 2010. Essays and articles relating to commentary will also be considered.

What is commentary? Although the distinction between commentary and other forms of writing is not an absolute one, the following may serve as guidelines:
1. A commentary focuses on a single object (text, image, event, etc.) or portion thereof.
2. A commentary does not displace but rather shapes itself to and preserves the integrity, structure, and presence of its object.
3. The relationship of a commentary to its object may be described as both parallel and perpendicular. Commentary is parallel to its object in that it moves with or runs alongside it, following the flow of reading it. Commentary is perpendicular to its object in that it pauses or breaks from reading it in order to comment on it. The combination of these dimensions gives commentary a structure of continuing discontinuity and a durable utility.
4. Commentary tends to maintain a certain quantitative proportion of itself vis-à-vis its object. This tendency corresponds to the practice of "filling up the margins" of a text.
5. Commentary, as a form of discourse, tends to favor and allow for the multiplication of meanings, ideas, and references. Commentary need not, and often does not, have an explicit central thesis or argument. This tendency gives commentary a ludic or auto-teleological potential.

Submissions may be sent through the journal website or as Word attachment to Deadline: March 1, 2010.


Glossator publishes original commentaries, editions and translations of commentaries, and essays and articles relating to the theory and history of commentary, glossing, and marginalia (catena, commentum, gemara, glossa, hypomnema, midrash, peser, pingdian, scholia, tafsir, talkhis, tika, vritti, zend, zhangju, et al). The journal aims to encourage the practice of commentary as a creative form of intellectual work and to provide a forum for dialogue and reflection on the past, present, and future of this ancient genre of writing. By aligning itself, not with any particular discipline, but with a particular mode of production, Glossator gives expression to the fact that praxis founds theory.

Glossator is a peer-reviewed open-access journal, sponsored by The Graduate Center, CUNY. It is available online at
Editors: Nicola Masciandaro (Brooklyn College, CUNY), Karl Steel (Brooklyn College, CUNY), Ryan Dobran (Cambridge University).

Section Editors: Nadia Altschul (Johns Hopkins), Stephen A. Barney (UC Irvine), Erik Butler (Emory University), Mary Ann Caws (Graduate Center, CUNY), Alan Clinton (Georgia Institute of Technology), David Greetham (Graduate Center, CUNY), Bruno Gullí (Long Island University), Daniel Heller-Roazen (Princeton University), Jason Houston (University of Oklahoma), Heather Jackson (University of Toronto), Eileen A. Joy (Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville), Anna Klososowka (Miami University), Erin Labbie (Bowling Green), Carsten Madsen (University of Arhaus), Sean McCarthy (Lehman College, CUNY), Reza Negarestani, Daniel C. Remein (NYU), Sherry Roush (Penn State University), Michael Sargent (Graduate Center, CUNY), Michael Stone-Richards (College for Creative Studies), Eugene Thacker (Georgia Institute of Technology), Frans van Liere (Calvin College), Jesús R. Velasco (Columbia), Robert Viscusi (Brooklyn College, CUNY), Valerie Michelle Wilhite (Miami University), Scott Wilson (Lancaster University), Yoshihisa Yamamoto (Chiba University).


The Poetry of J. H. Prynne. Special Co-Editor: Ryan Dobran. Spring 2010.
Contributors: Justin Katko, Sam Ladkin, Ian Patterson, Neil Pattison, Reitha Pattison, Robin Purves, Thomas Roebuck, Matthew Sperling, Josh Stanley, Michael Stone-Richards, Keston Sutherland, Mike Wallace-Hadrill, John Wilkinson.

Occitan Poetry. Special Co-Editors: Anna Kłosowska & Valerie Wilhite. Spring 2011.
Contributions: Vincent Barletta, Bill Burgwinkle, Charles Fantazzi, Marisa Gálvez, Virginie Greene, Cary Howie, Erin Labbie, Deborah Lyons, Simone Marchesi, Jean-Jacques Poucel, Jesús Rodríguez-Velasco, Luke Sunderland, Valerie Wilhite.

Black Metal. Special Co-Editors: Nicola Masciandaro & Reza Negarestani. Spring 2012.
Contributors: Lee Barron, Ray Brassier, Erik Butler, Dominic Fox, Nicola Masciandaro, Reza Negarestani, Benjamin Noys, Steven Shakespeare, Aspasia Stephanou, Eugene Thacker, James Trafford, Stewart Voegtlin, Scott Wilson, Alex Williams, Evan Calder Williams, Ben Woodard.

Nous ne faisons que nous entregloser -- Montaigne
All our so-called consciousness is a more or less fantastic commentary on an unknown, perhaps unknowable, but felt text -- Nietzsche
Not system but commentary is the legitmate form through which truth is approached -- Gershom Scholem