Krespel's earlier comment to the narrator that Antonia enjoys hearing him play the "queen" of his violins is filled out into the drama of Antonia's and Krespel's discovery of the violin's amazing, sympathetic, ventriloquistic
power, and Antonia's equally amazing willingness to surrender herself and her voice to her father's wishes, in a fantasy of compliance with his will.
Did they incite colony members to mob the intruder, or did it create a ventriloquistic
twist that misdirected an invader?
Collaborative autobiography is inherently ventriloquistic
12 The ventriloquistic
apostrophe that allows the hero to assume his destiny by assuming the place of the dead in symbolic form only, even as it founds the symbolic order in all its autonomous potency--"wretched shall France be only in my name"--on a phantasmatic form of specular identification, represents theater's ideological function in its most irreducible form: a violently repercussive misreading, but a misreading that constitutes the possibility of meaning; a repression, but a repression that conjures what it excludes.
A poem like Baker's shows a ventriloquistic
facility with "speechmanners"--a very useful poetic skill.
The broken narrative shifts from one context to another with a sort of ventriloquistic
movement, a sleight-of-hand that keeps one looking--or reading--back and forth, stage left to downstage center and back, as if following a cast of characters through an intricately choreographed scene.
There is a submerged freight of horror in a good deal of Pagis's work, but precisely because the historical occasion for it is so enormous, the way he finds to give it compelling expression without the shrillness of hysteria or the bathos of pseudoprophetic pronouncement is to cultivate a variety of distanced, ventriloquistic
voices that become authentic surrogates for his own voice.
To view camp as the communal, historically dense exploration of a variety of reparative practices is to be able to do better justice to many of the defining elements of classic camp performance: the startling, juicy displays of excess erudition, for example; the passionate, often hilarious antiquarianism, the prodigal production of alternate historiography; the "over"-attachment to fragmentary, marginal, waste, or leftover products; the rich, highly interruptive affective variety; the irrepressible fascination with ventriloquistic
experimentation; the disorienting juxtapositions of present with past, and popular with high culture.