This chapter introduces the main themes of the book: time, writing, and community. Through a reading of Abe’s 1946 poem “Jikan to kūkan” [Time and Space], a notion of ecstatic time is introduced in which succession or temporal movement is made possible on the basis of time standing outside itself. Writing appears as the instance of spatiality or materiality that must remain in order for time to be recognized as such. Finally, the notion of community is explained in such a way as to reveal the manner in which all given communities exist as incessantly exposed to temporal movement and the concomitant threat to identity
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