Let us imagine the time Kit Marlowe was living, a society through every vein of which strong patriarchy was flowing and it had not been for a long time since the idea of having a queen reigning the country had crossed English citizens' minds. Prior to this time England was known only as a European isle, somewhat remote from the rest of the continent, and always threatened and at the mercy of the Spanish Empire. She had turned already an outcast by turning her back to the Roman Catholic Church which was indeed at the service of the Spanish superpower. England was already an excluded community and now, after a brief interval of return to where law had bid it to be this time she was back to Protestantism, but with a queen as the supreme head of the state and the church, Elizabeth I.
Elizabeth was respected with awe, for what was the only common point between her and her succeeded queen half-sister was being both the heiresses to their father, Henry VIII's throne, nothing more. Instead, the conflicting issues were aplenty between the two. Mary was catholic and thus favoured but the Church of Rome, Elizabeth was a Protestant Anglican; the former was married to a Spanish prince while the latter has been known throughout history to remain an ever-virgin queen. The monarch, the supreme head of the state and church was standing already in opposition to a serious patriarchal institution, marriage. Why was her marriage so important? Why should she have eventually chosen a European suitor? Was it only for the sake of yet another impossible male heir to guarantee the survival of the Tudors? Definitely this has been a significant reason for such worries over the throne, but what equally mattered was to have some entity fit to the position, that is a male being if not possibly in lieu of, at least beside the queen thus to save the patriarchal aura as well as to impregnate the throne with an heir or heiress.
Things did not go as the worriers of such issues had hoped. The Anglican queen remained unmarried, barren, and female. The growing anxiety of what was to become of the monarchy assumed varied shapes to be projected; the body of the queen was the wasteland with no promise of order but Other. If she was not to be pregnant of the proper heir, she would be suggestive of growing racial, theological, and national threat.
It was during the reign of Elizabeth that England gradually assumed "a new ensemble" which definitely superseded her former social, continental, and political condition. What was already known as Britain was assembling a new identity with the sedimentations of the past, those highlighted in history and those which kept fleeing from it.
What has been gained today by women, i.e. "economic, political, and professional equality" in addition to sexual equality which even today implies "permissiveness" beyond what the patriarchal ideology desires to grant women are those attributes that Elizabeth had assumed in their most sublime manner when she was crowned as the supreme head of the state and Church of England (Kristeva, Women's Time 21). The privileges being "at once biological, physiological, and relative to reproduction" turn the body of the queen to a social, political, and ideological receptacle of trouble, the wasteland which is positioned on the apex of the pyramid of power and yet, is prone to growing the unwanted, the alien, the foe (21). The already imaginarily castrated hysteric comes to power with her penis envy as the motivation for whatever she destines to do; she, "no longer wishing to be excluded," nor "content with the function" granted her, goes after language which is the constituent of the symbolic realm (23). She takes hold of the "counter-investment of socio-symbolic contract" only to subvert it, to break the codes and in their lieu, to create ones closer to the discourse of body, and to give voice to the unclaimed repressed revolt that when resurrected can be more lethal that violence. She is promoted to make decisions, having obtained "economic as well as narcissistic advantages," to protect the established order that would previously offer her but frustration and repression (26). Yet, as the body of the margin centralized, she is regarded as the space pregnant with guilt and sin, located outside law, the other sex, and the other religion of which the society must purge itself; the womb that is growing fast "as a simulacrum of the combated society or power" and threatens the very pillars of monotheism, the archaic omnipotence (28).
Pregnancy is already known as the "ordeals of splitting of the subject" and the love maze of "coexistence of the self and the other," where the otherwise repressed uncanny manifests itself (31). In the confusion of self and other, the chora of inside and outside, the fluidity of identity is what stands against the inevitability of death as "a reply to the eternal question of mortality" (35).
Why Kristeva? Roland Barthes in reviewing Kriteva's first book once said: "She always destroys the latest preconception, the one we thought we could be comforted by, the one of which we could be proud" (qtd. in Kristeva, Foreign Body 172). The present study aims at shedding new light on major early Renaissance dramatic works of Christopher Marlowe who is regarded as among the first practitioners of blank verse and a genius prior to when William Shakespeare enjoyed his ever-expansive fame. While the surface of Marlovian drama is shy of much feminine characteristics, the concepts of strangeness and otherness may be found aplenty in all his major plays. The purpose of the present study is not to study femininity in its conventional terms of definition, but to approach it from a new perspective, one that can find her traces prevalent in such space with the least expectations ever. What do we mean when we call something feminine? What constitute femininity? How can it ideologically be shaped in a given epoch with its own specificities? This is where the consideration of Julia Kristeva's critical theories can be of great help, for unlike her close attachment to what is known as French Feminism, she has been arguably regarded as an essentialist and an anti-feminist for her critical estimations towards the early two waves of the mentioned movement. Her criticism of conventional notion of femininity is well suited to what the present study means to put forth for gathering the essence of her critical views, be they structuralistic and linguistic, psychoanalytic, or literary, the researcher would hope to come to a new understanding and definition of femininity. Femininity as such is considered a tapestry of excluded elements of all kinds; those that are not necessarily associated with the entity called woman; it is regarded as a condition of otherness, exclusion, atheism, polymorphism, and polyvalence, a melange of chaos and upheaval, and a destabilization of the imposed prevalence of order. Femininity defies form, hence more of some condition than specific attribute.
Deconstructive concept of femininity is generally suggested by those French feminists bringing forth ideas more in line with Jacque Derrida's views. Alice Jardine defines the feminine as "nothing more than a very elaborate metaphor, a symptom of the profound illness of Western culture" (qtd. in Robinson 203). Jardine's 'gynesis' is where the privilege and authority of Phallus is threatened, decentred, and deconstructed and the hegemony of the authority is positioned at a crisis. Derrida's perspective towards the feminine is also an alternative one; one which "should not . . . be hastily mistaken for a woman's femininity, for female sexuality, or for any other of those essentializing fetishes which might still tantalize the dogmatic philosopher, the impotent artist or the inexperienced seducer who has not yet escaped his foolish hopes of capture" divorcing it "woman's femininity," and "female sexuality" (qtd. in Robinson 207-8). The multiplicity, disorder, and heterogeneity of femininity is viewed in this regard standing opposed to the unity and homogeneity of masculinity. The heterogeneous is the discourse's elsewhere in the cleavage "between Woman and women" as the object and not the subject of representation; Woman as opposed to woman both "inside and outside the ideology of gender" . . . a non-utopian space where there is no concern about "man's truth and his construction of the feminine" (225-6).
Conveying the unutterable jouissance, poetic language is constituted by the uncertainty of the spatiality and temporality that precede the symbolic and culture (as the "theologization of the thetic"), ever threatening the integrity of the "civilized space;" the "anti-formal" aesthetics that is endowed with "infiltration, disruption, shatterings, negation, murder, and supplantation" and opens the gates of language to the destructive flow of jouissance (Bedient 807-9). To Kristeva, it is essentially anal (anality being the condition of metaphor-making, where faeces substitutes the phallus) and desires "negative freedom from all identity" manifesting itself in prosody and rhythm. In the realm of poetic language thetic closure already corrupted by theology and "murder of soma" is defeated to the choric dynamism of change and fluidity (812). The desire for negative renewal is shown through tone, rhythm, image, and intonation all of which affirm the power of instinctuailty that is ever-pregnant with anarchy exhibiting multiplicity and heterogeneity and struggling "toward death" by agitating the body.
Kristeva believes that Western patriarchy is historically founded upon "Judaic monotheism" and the consequent "will for community" that internalizes the name of God with no toleration for otherness, and where sexes are separated with no certain destiny for the polymorphous and heterogeneous (Rabine 42). Femininity is regarded as the Other sex unworthy of social inclusion of any sort into the stability of the society. There is the dichotomy of the masculine and the feminine where the spirit is associated with the former and materiality, and impulsive process with the latter. In such hierarchical society "the unified human subject is male and female is excluded from the state, religion, culture, and the status of the subject to assure the cohesion of society" (44). Kristeva studies such process of repression through semiotics where the focus is upon the fact that consciousness emerges after the acquisition of language and not prior in a process throughout which there appear a cleavage between the subject of speech and the maternal body. Her semiotic as a stage of normative development is designated to "unconscious, instinctual, and bodily impulses preceding syntactic language" where there is the abundance of effect as rhythm and intonation (45). The paternal function on the other hand, wills to separate the child from the maternal realm structuring both family and social behaviour by the repression of the pleasurable impulsive process of the maternal. To structure one's identity, master one's state and religion, one need to repress the feminine. The feminine, therefore, exists only to mirror the masculine to himself where individualism is founded on sin, guilt, and transcendence. Language and literature become the reflections of economic practice and the ideology as "the Law of the One" rather than a contradiction with them all functioning to "reinforce the same ideology" (47).
Death drive or death instinct is urged by libido and is in contrast with the necessity of communal system of living. This is the reason for which civilization imposes restrictive consciousness upon the "self-destructive" and guilt-inducing desire for freedom; in the freedom of desire, the subject is willing to die of it "to offer flesh for the ideal father" turning the desire, to one impasse "for/of death" (Kristeva, Psychoanalysis and Freedom 2, 6). The type of liberty which is prohibited by civilization is the instinctual one and not the one related to the sense of security, for after all, "isolated human individuals" are all combined into "families, races, peoples, and nations, into one great unity, the unity of humanity" (Freud qtd. in Kristeva 3). The urge of freedom which is a pre-Christian aporia finds a partial solution is the murder of the father" (3). Judeo-Christian monotheism attempts to entrap the structure of human desire in the moral net of locus. This moral obligation is rooted in the very desire that essentialises the acceptance of the other's as well as their own death and which eventually gives way to its own censorship. There are two destinies determined for freedom of desire in language: 1. Sadomasochism, or 2. Achieving sublimation, in the experience of maternal love where esp. the male child functions as an other to the mother in such "perverse pleasure" (5).
In psychoanalysis as a "coloured Judeo-Christianity" as Kristeva terms it, there are two types of analysands confronted with the force of desire: the first are those who are suffering for having pursued their desire to the end and have no regards for boundaries of any kind, and who are diagnosed as "the perverse," and other type are those who are yet uncertain where the root of their desires lie, "the borderline psychosomatic, the melancholic" (8). What the analyst finds in the talks of the analysand is the "human plurality" which is no way institutionalized and is aggressive towards notions of norm and identity, making of the subject an-ever perpetual rebellious analysand. The desire for freedom brings about the constant process of "mortality" and "natality" with the implication of "choice and beginning" (11). Choice makes us encounter "others as other" and with beginning, the uniqueness of Augustinian birth (one insistent upon the beginning where there 'was only Word') is shackled. Therefore, divinity as a guarantor of meaning through the "celestial Father," chastising critical thinking, and a "protective system of values" is denied (13).
The notion of femininity in Kristeva's critical view functions as an elaborate metaphor representing a critical decentralization of the hegemony of paternal mastery and phallic privilege. There is no symmetry between the two terms masculine and feminine for both have always been constructed by the former. Jacque Derrida defines the feminine as follows:
"The feminine should not . . . be hastily mistaken for a woman's femininity, for female sexuality, or for any other of those essentializing fetishes which might still tantalize the dogmatic philosopher, the impotent artist or the inexperienced seducer who has not yet escaped his foolish hopes of capture."
(Derrida in Robinson 207)
Femininity as such is of purely textual nature, an elsewhere which contains the havoc of Furies which has always been attempted to be domesticated. The metaphor is embodied in the body of the Woman where the masculine discourse places horror; it is a non-place, a non-utopian space which is not concerned with "man's truth" (226).
What is aimed in psychoanalytic discourse is the decentralization of the subject and giving meaning to desire so that the subject may enjoy identity in confrontation with the object. In this sense psychoanalysis "gives birth to semiology" (Kristeva, Psychoanalysis and Polis 79). The interpreter in this sense, be they the author or the critic of the text, will speak the semantic system within language which is transformed by the effects of the imaginary that are at the mercy of the repressed, unconscious desire for the Other that cannot be signified and "gives way to delirium" as opposed to solid reality (81). Delirium is the space where the maternal and the feminine can be manifested within language order, the void of jouissance which cannot be symbolized and where the truth of the "primordial object of desire-the [archaic] Mother" prevails in a deformed and displaced shaped, what Kristeva terms as "mad truth" (82).
The subject of delirium, the author or the critic, re-establishes the causality of desire by expanding the limits of the analyzable and in so doing widens the discursive space for desire in confrontation to which meaning is at times frustrated by the "ex-centricity of desire" (84). Psychoanalysis is in this regard assimilated to semiotics in that both analyse human psyche through delirium and strive to reach the integral void within the core where there is no long distance between the word and flesh and where in "falling into nature . . . the pagan mother" tempts anyone who is not yet too distant from her (87). For both the psychoanalyst and the semiotician, poetic language, style, and syntactic structure are means to render the message and thematize the displaced and the deformed in the enunciative process. They both resort to the Word for it has replaced the flesh and emotion creating a proper distinction between the subject and the object of the normative language. Paroxysm or hyperbole, for instance are enigmas beyond discourse and "For the psychoanalyst it recalls a desiring indebtedness to the maternal continent" (92). The abject is situated in the cleavage between the two, pointing to the "non-objectality of the archaic mother" who is the "locus of needs" and "attraction and repulsion," and is understood in terms of the "sense of the horrible and fascinating abomination" with which the feminine is associated in most cultures and is struggled against to be purged by them (90). The purge of the abject on the other hand, transforms it to and establishes the sacred which is in fact in line with infamy, evil, and femininity, something not to be touched or gotten closed to once the subject is positioned within the conventionality of the symbolic; something to be scared of.
Kristeva's psychoanalysis affirms the existence of the other within the subject as opposed the religious transcendence and the sacred in her negative theology can be traced in "feminine experience" of demythologizing religion where the essential desires for loving and the "ecstatic fusion with a transcendental other . . . and the semiotic drive for the unity with the immanent" are being played out; be they the fusion with God or the analyst (Bradley 280-1). The psychic illusion of religion "dogmatizes" the desires while in psychoanalysis they are being grounded within the very individual (282). Her concept of the feminine positions the sacred somewhere between the meaning and the body of the feminine where unlike the realm of the symbolic where jouissance is denied through the religious need for . . . omnipotence" such eroticism is unconsciously recognized as an interruption (283). In her negative theology, Kristeva attempts to free the feminine from the repressive confines of the body of the Virgin Mary and in so doing to mobilize the "unthought space between transcendence and immanence;" some space between culture and nature where the unknown as "the ego-ideal" is no longer recognized as 'God' (285). Kristeva's semiotic heterogeneity of the sacred is defined as "the other human being in me;" such space is tolerant with the stranger within. It is also recognized in terms of the foreigner within the feminine, the unconscious, or the drives being colonized as 'my own proper other' turning identity of the subject as one "tolerant psychic community" (Kristeva in Bradley 289). In her New Maladies of the Soul, a new belief in an interior life of the psyche is suggested, one tries to find the unknown in the fall from the transcendence to solid body where the positivization of all religions is regarded as an exhausted thing of the past.
The body of Marlowe's drama is well suited with such femininity for it is some space undergoing constant upheaval, one that sets out its journey from the established order and heads for the original chaos which initiated existence. Death is the only solution to put an end to such deteriorating movement back to disorder and savagery, a full stop at the end of the sentence which quiets the signifying system of language.
The other, as differing from the "conventionally acceptable social and cultural paradigms" has always been observed with suspicion of undermining the security and calm of the society (Trainor 144). But this is not all; the other in fact can surface something which has long been keep in the dark, the vulnerability of selfhood, the fragility that quite often reveals symptoms in "sickness, aging, [and/or] proneness to physical injury;" self converses with the other so that it can voice its own identity and achieves meaning in the awareness of this "conversation with the religious, ethical, and social voices" (145). The very notion of conversation leads one to the intertextual functions of culture and society that give a hand in creating literary meaning, the conventional, synchronic, and diachronic elements that are incorporated in the text in the forms of allegories, allusions, and rhetorical figures. Text, in this regards, stands metaphorically for two worlds: the "biblical text," enriched with the "inner play" of the textual tapestry and the "outer play" of the "cultural" text of other discourses (146). Just like the conversation between self and other, the entanglement of the inner and outer play in the process of construction and destruction of language ends of in the fruition of text. The voices within the text then originate in different time and culture and meaning in this regards will no longer enjoy the assumed "pure kernel of objective truth" (147).
One the other hand, the purity of the subject as the maker of meaning is dubitable. The subject as interpreter of text is located in polyvalent, and historically conditioned social context and hence is subject to the all-encompassing boundaries. In this respect, the interpreter does no longer have access to the core of meaning, themselves considered as an other, a foreigner to locus. Meanwhile as the addressee to varied discursive voices of religion, ethics, and social codes, the subject comes across an essential and inherent foreignness that suspends all presuppositions of self and otherness.
Despite the variety of interests Kristeva has always been engaged with, there have remained themes as rebellion, chora, otherness, semiotic of pre-Oedipal, and the maternal as well as the Law of the Father that kept recurrently and consistently being observed. All these issues are in one way or another associated with her interest in the concepts of exile and cosmopolitanism as she, herself, has been one experiencing them all throughout her life. As an exile, she has witnessed the unbridgeable split within communities which is tied with the question of nationalism and the urge behind taking refuge and belonging that is at once as "psychological, political, and social" as "regressive [and] archaic" (Kristeva, Foreign Body 174). Kristeva finds strength in the nation that welcomes outsiders as the "transplants" who help expand her culture; such nation like one body due to undergo transplantation must be healthy enough to accept national polyphony and the culture of the others who are internalized. Each subject should affirm that they are simultaneously a self and an other coexisting in one body and that eventually hell is inherent in all of us (177). This necessitates a new kind of religion to bring all men together with "the rapport between the cultural and political worlds . . . consolidating the ethnic and national identities without hardening" (179). In this way she hopes to rehabilitate the repressed heterogeneity which is no way exclusive to femininity, but a "disturbing strangeness" that is shared by both women and men (180).
Normative development of psyche demands that the law of the father be there for coherence to take place though in Judeo-Christianity its tyranny and inhibition outweigh. There, femininity regarded as other is introduced in terms of, troubling "polymorphous sexuality" and "the homeland of psychosis" which is tied to the pre-Oedipal semiotic (182, 3). Yet, she never regards the two realms of semiotic and symbolic be categorically separated, for each stands as a subversive side of the other, the former endowed with desires and the latter giving way to paranoia in negligence of those desires.
Absence is one of the recurring themes in Kristevan psychoanalysis and points to the failure of the paternal or symbolic function that confronts the translation of the psychical space with conflict. When discourse suffers impotency it is impossible for the body to be verbalized. The analytic process is one in which the lost desire can be translated into language. The poetic language and its analytic study can bring forth the hope for reconciliation with the social contracts in breaking and renewing them. All along the process responsiveness of the maternal semiotic to music as the reminiscence of choric rhythm is manifested; where the alleged transgression of semiotic unsettles the fixation of social contracts. This is why the maternal is regarded as abominable by the symbolic, for in such space subjectivity which is shaped by the Law of the Father is threatened. The Bible is the site for such struggle.
Language on a symbolic level manifests the murder of the maternal through the authority of the father who is known as the Other while at the same time there is the desire to return to the maternal jouissance; this is specifically revealed in "religious texts" (Gambaudo 110). Psychoanalysis is the realm where such challenges can take place in transference and counter-transference between the analyst and the analysand known as the subject-in-process. The semiotic comes clearer to the surface when the current symbolic identities are broken for new one to challenge to take their place. In her "Women's Time," Kristeva discusses "the relationship between identity and the notion of time/space" the former being at the mercy of reproduction as a common memory reminiscent of the time . . . anterior to the notion Nation and its collapse" (112). Women's heterogeneity conceptualizes two kinds of histories: the cursive cyclical one, and eternal reproductive which stand opposing to the linear masculine temporality. The multiplicity of women is reflected in their "desire to be mothers" that indicate their desire to merge and unite with the other. While there need be a reconciliation between the maternal space/time and patriarchal linearlity, the latter is being formed in the destruction of the former and finally ends up triumphant in her abjection. Kristeva suggests the "loss of national frontiers" that can take the "Historic subject" back to the archaic time "prior to the entry into language" (112).
Revolt is the other concept Kristeva shows interest in as "the possibility of chanfe in/of society" regarding both its "powers and limits" (113). What gives rise to revolt is the voice of a dominant integral power the uniformity of which the subject's desire challenges to break, and in whose total triumph "banality and theatrical performance" are the ultimate gaining for any specificity is condemned to suppression. Kristevan organic that is equalled with "preverbal animality" destabilizes the psychic coherence of the symbolic subject and this is precisely what she urges us to give a chance to for the "reconstruction of past" and the recollection suspicious of the symbolic and law-abiding self; such return is the consequence of the revolt's relation to movement (114). Revolt as such that works against suppression and exclusion provides the consistency of subjectivity with a new possibility for change. In unchaining the unknown a negative process of signification will initiate that would lead the subject to "the original trauma" that is a necessity in understanding feminine heterogeneity (115).
Revolt is entangled with subjection to/of language and its limits but this is no escape from negativity, for in revolt the subject is considered as "the object of the life drive (Eros)" in its narcissistic identification with the "father of the prehistory:"
The ego cuts itself off from erotic impulse. Such a transformation [. . .] frees the death drive [. . .]: the death drive is thus, from the start, inscribed in the process of subjectivation, or in the constitution of the ego, as an initial and indispensible stage in the mutation of the drive into significance.
(Kristeva qtd. in Gambaudo 116)
Negativity is provides the subjects with the transformative space where revolution is defined as the non-sense of revolt, for what revolt does is merely to express the "unfulfilled desire" and frustrations that are manifested in the shape of "future will" that can be let go of once they are fulfilled.
Kristeva believes that crime and offence should be judged in public arena while the act of forgiveness can take place in private. Psychoanalytic sessions are the most private space in public that can bring along the process of forgiveness. Writing also could be called a quest for forgiveness in which there is no erasure of past but only attenuation and transcendence from it. Forgiveness involves "continual renewal" and the "comprehension of the other . . . beyond rationalization" rendering a second chance to the offender to start anew, a "personal rebirth" while during the process "non-meaning" is granted meaning and judgement suspended (Kristeva, Forgiveness 280, 281). The terms and acts of judgement and punishment are closely related to Judeo-Christianity, while forgiveness dates back to Roman times with the chance of rebirth and perceptions of the essential motives that are tied to the "aggressiveness toward the mother" being in charge of everything for the subject (281). The traces of such anger to Kristeva, can be found in "intonations, metaphors, and affects, of the psychic life" manifested by "semiotic signs" (282).
In the private sphere of literature of psychoanalysis the culprit is rendered the chance of transformation and the punishment is not to be a retaliation in kind, for that would give way to the provocation of "sadistic escalation" in the criminal, turning him to a hero (283). In literature, as in psychoanalytic sessions the subject is turned back to the inexpressible. What makes the process of writing different is that the big Other is totally silent with no power of intervention, unlike how the analyst (as the representative of the Other) performs in analytic session.
The act of forgiveness with its inherent desire for transformation is atemporal; it is hence ahistorical and for this, it cannot be performed within social arena that is time-bound. Consequently, judgement is regarded as tied with the linearity of time. Psychoanalysis as the most private space of social discourses does still belong to the public sphere and Kristeva finds the roots in the Christian tradition of confessing. Literature "sinks into complacency and idealization" of recycling the trauma and does not provide the criminal with the chance of rebirth. Yet, the circular pattern of practicing writing in its reflection of "wanderings of individualities" and the essential polyphony or multiplicity of voices can be a way to get out of the trauma.
Names also can be indicative of otherness.
Abject Space of the Mother
In her psychoanalytic practice Julia Kristeva moves stages back from where Freud and Lacan initiated theirs, to the realm which is pre-lingual, pre-verbal, and hence defiant of Symbolic signification. She poses the question of subjectivity in its early stages while it is being ready for the later paternal ones to follow the realm of the mother. In such backward movement she comes across borderlines, ambiguities, frontiers, and alienations that have a hand in process of the individual's subjectification. Society imposes its rules upon the individual first from the core of home where the mother is positioned. So what generally is assumed to be outwardly patriarchally established is feminine and maternal deep inside the core and once the idea is comprehended, there comes with it the inevitable rejection of the maternal power, turning it into some entity with enormous abjection.
The abject can include, the feminine and the masculine, the miserable and the almighty, the idiot and the genius. Kristeva exemplifies it in "anti-Semitism" which is profoundly inherent monotheism (Kristeva, Psychoanalysis and Polis 91).
According to Kristeva, temporality is of two aspects of linear/historical interpreted as masculine, and monumental/circular that is associated with the feminine. The feminine as such is constituent of archaic (monumental) temporality in space where the potentiality of hysteria is growing fast. This space being archetypally related to femininity, is enumerated in many matriarchal religions as the aporetic Chora which retains cyclical temporality and is "anterior to the One," where "the eternal recurrence of rhythm" conforms with nature and the unnameability of jouissance and where the imaginary "incestuous son" attempt to come in between the parents and claims for the mother (Kristeva, Women's Time 16). This archetypal maternal is manifested in the body of Mary who is impregnated with Christ. The concept of time in such space is inevitably linked to the latter; it is no way linear but "rhythmed by accidents" is constituted by ruptures, frozenness, and explosions (17). The feminine represented as mother, woman, and hysteric points to the multiplicity of the entity and unlike the masculine, it is non-obsessional, and a-civilizational.
In "Stabat Mater" Kristeva describes how Femininity in Christianity is disguised in the body of the mother as the paradoxical other sex; the unnameable, shapeless, lost continent where primary narcissism is idealized while hiding it is being appropriated; where one can imagine the most "unimaginable places" unveiling the meaning that lies beneath the surface of words (133, 134). It is where meaning abounds in "non-language" and the ruling God differs from the one in Judeo-Christianity being the essence of love (134). The Christian strife to show the maternal as tame and calm is subsumed in the body of the Virgin Mary in identification with the Holy Ghost; the very act which is indicative of the undercurrent anxiety the patriarchal society suffers. The impregnation of Mary by the aid of a non-human forms and analogy between the mother and the son as respect to the immaculate conception, absolution from committing sin, and the gift of eternity in lieu of death. That fact that much about Mary's life has been cited but not officially affirmed in the Gospels or other religious sources can be eloquent of the fact that the myth of goddess-like Mary has functioned throughout the history of Christianity as a way to neutralize the anxiety-provoking power of the femininity veiled in the form of the maternal. The Gospels say nothing about the history of Mary and her accompaniment with her son in the crucifixion and not until the sixteenth century the stories about her were translated into Latin. The idea of Immaculate Conception stemmed from the forth-century notion of sexuality linked to death and the other way around. The point was to maintain some distance between Mary and Eve in granting her post-pregnancy virginity. She was privileged with eternity just like her son besides is granted three distinct roles in her relation with Christ/God, passing "from the role of Mother to that of Daughter" and even Wife (139).