By Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht
Reading, we find, is an experiencing of particular moods and atmospheres, or Stimmung. those moods are on a continuum corresponding to a musical scale. They current themselves as nuances that problem our powers of discernment and outline, in addition to language's power to seize them. possibly the easiest we will be able to do is to indicate of their path. Conveying own encounters with poetry, track, portray, and the unconventional, this booklet therefore gestures towards the intangible and within the method, constitutes a daring safety of the subjective adventure of the arts.
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Extra resources for Atmosphere, Mood, Stimmung : On a Hidden Potential of Literature
Today, after manifold departures, reorganizations, and metamorphoses (which, as a rule, have not been motivated by any explicit program or project), we find ourselves facing marked—indeed, seemingly irreconcilable, mutually exclusive—differences between two basic assumptions concerning the ontology of literature. ) By “ontology of literature,” I mean fundamental stances about how literary texts—as material facts and worlds of meaning—relate to realities outside of works themselves. On the one hand stands Deconstruction.
The fact that such illustrious personages are no longer to be found is both a symptom of, and a reason for, the change that has taken place. Literary studies cannot possibly remain the same after the loss of scholars with the distinction and intellectual vitality of Erich Auerbach, Kenneth Burke, Paul de Man, Jacques Derrida, LucienGoldmann, Wolfgang Iser, Claude Lévi-Strauss, Wolfgang Preisendanz, Richard Rorty, Edward Said, and Raymond Williams. Today, after manifold departures, reorganizations, and metamorphoses (which, as a rule, have not been motivated by any explicit program or project), we find ourselves facing marked—indeed, seemingly irreconcilable, mutually exclusive—differences between two basic assumptions concerning the ontology of literature.
Following a hunch means trusting an implicit promise for a while and making a step toward describing a phenomenon that remains unknown—one that has aroused our curiosity and, in the case of atmospheres and moods, often envelops and even enshrouds us. When a description of this kind occurs in reference to a literary work, it is probable that the effect—up to a certain point—coincides with that of the “primary” text. Writing in this way has affinities with the conception of the literary-critical essay that Georg Lukács laid out in his 1911 book, Soul and Form.