Phrase: “The mind struggles to establish a connection…”

“The mind struggles to establish a connection—a sequence of cause and effect—and, being unable to do so, suffers a species of temporary paralysis” (254).

Sianne Ngai argues in her chapter “stuplimity,” from ugly feelings, that the issue which arises in Gertrude Stein’s work, among others, is that we are simply unable to understand the language because it is not forward thinking like we are used to. This type of writing is unbalanced, and the combination of words and sentences is unusual for most readers, and it causes a disconnect, which some read, Leo Stein specifically, as “stupid” (249). Ngai is asking readers to take a moment and analyze what makes this language so hard to understand, and it is because we “perceive” a difference, which causes us to expect it to be different and possibly difficult (261).

Ngai, Sianne. "stuplimity." ugly feelings. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2005. 248-261.

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