By Robert P Marzec (auth.)
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Additional info for An Ecological and Postcolonial Study of Literature: From Daniel Defoe to Salman Rushdie
The last as the object of a collective evaluation determines the value of the entire series. It marks the exact point at which the assemblage must reproduce itself, begin a new operation period or a new cycle, lodge itself on another territory, and beyond which the assemblage could not continue as such. This is indeed a next-to-the-last, a penultimate, since it comes before the ultimate. The ultimate is when the assemblage must change its nature: B would have to plant the excess seeds. A would have to increase the rhythm of its own plantings and remain on the same land.
The Greeks early called this emerging and rising in itself and in all things phusis. It clears and illuminates, also, that on which and in which man bases his dwelling. We call this ground the earth. What this word says is not to be associated with the idea of a mass of matter deposited somewhere, or with the merely astronomical idea of a planet. Earth is that whence the arising brings back and shelters everything that arises without violation. In the things that arise, earth is present as the sheltering agent.
The ultimate is when the assemblage must change its nature: B would have to plant the excess seeds. A would have to increase the rhythm of its own plantings and remain on the same land. (ATP 438, emphasis added) The question of exchange here touches the precise relation one has to the land, and the manner in which the land will appear as an entity—either as an entity that withholds its presence to a certain extent (in that it refuses a universal measure), or as a territory that can be appropriated from afar.