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Heidegger, Holderlin, and the Subject of Poetic Language: Toward a New Poetics of Dasein

Heidegger, Holderlin, and the Subject of Poetic Language: Toward a New Poetics of Dasein

Copyright Date: 2004
Published by: Fordham University
Pages: 336
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    Heidegger, Holderlin, and the Subject of Poetic Language: Toward a New Poetics of Dasein
    Book Description:

    Heidegger's interpretations of the poetry of Hlderlin are central to Heidegger's later philosophy and have determined the mainstream reception of Hlderlin's poetry. Gosetti-Ferencei argues that Heidegger has overlooked central elements in Hlderlin's poetics, such as a Kantian understanding of aesthetic subjectivity and a commitment to Enlightenment ideals. These elements, she argues, resist the more politically distressing aspects of Heidegger's interpretations, including Heidegger's nationalist valorization of the German language and sense of nationhood, or Heimat.In the context of Hlderlin's poetics of alienation, exile, and wandering, Gosetti-Ferencei draws a different model of poetic subjectivity, which engages Heidegger's later philosophy of Gelassenheit, calmness, or letting be. In so doing, she is able to pose a phenomenologically sensitive theory of poetic language and a new poetics of Dasein,or being there.

    eISBN: 978-0-8232-4794-3
    Subjects: Language & Literature
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Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter (pp. i-viii)
  2. Table of Contents (pp. ix-x)
  3. Preface (pp. xi-xiv)
  4. Acknowledgments (pp. xv-xvi)
  5. Abbreviations of Frequently Cited Works (pp. xvii-xviii)
  6. Introduction: The Dialogue Between Poetry and Thinking (pp. 1-26)

    Martin Heidegger’s thinking, from the beginning, anticipates a turn to poetic language and to Hölderlin. Although Heidegger became seriously occupied with Hölderlin in his wrritings and lectures in the 1930s, he had read him decades earlier, even before the publication of Hellingrath’s edition of Hölderlin’s collected works, which began to appear in 1916.¹ Still, inBeing and Time, Heidegger shows little sensitivity to poetic language, though he admits that “poetical discourse” (“dichtende” Rede)² amounts to “a disclosing of existence” (BT 205/162),³ and announces the necessity of “the task ofliberatinglanguage from logic” (BT 209/165). InBeing and Time, it...

  7. 1 Heidegger’s Critique of Subjectivity and the Poetic Turn (pp. 27-60)

    Heidegger’s poetics, especially its Hölderlinian elements, can be understood only within the context of a consideration of his theory of Being in its broader development. Important here is that the trajectory of Heidegger’s ontological concerns spans several stages from his early treatments of facticity to his later theory of language, and at each stage the strategies of phenomenological engagement shift accordingly. At each stage, however, it can be said that a continuity with the whole of Heidegger’s thought—despite the well-known notion of the “turn” and the suggestion of a radical break with his earlier work—is maintained by the...

  8. 2 Heidegger’s Hölderlin: Andenken and Ereignis Beyond Subjectivity (pp. 61-98)

    We have seen that Heidegger’s turn to poetic language and his theory of language are issued in a critique of subjectivity as forgetfulness of Being in favor of thinking that, in remembrance and recollection, recalls theSeinsgeschichte.¹ Poetic language is not only the shelter of truth, but it also founds and institutes truth in radically recollecting an essential-destinal origin. As we will see in this chapter, Heidegger’s interpretations of Hölderlin are both placed squarely within this schema and are pressed still further, such that the overcoming of subjective metaphysics a thinking ofEreignisand the“es gibt”that “sends” Being...

  9. 3 Poetic Subjectivity and the Elusiveness of Being (pp. 99-143)

    If the meaning borne by poetic language seems elusive, that which it brings to words, when regarded ontologically, is the very elusiveness of Being—the impossibility of grasping Being as absolute presence. Since Being must be accessed as withdrawing-emerging presence—as a complex play of presence and absence—poetic language, in contrast to prose, admits a unique capacity to bring Being to language.¹ Poetic language, through an array of formal strategies of indirection, expresses this play by evoking relations to the world which are other than a straightforward signification. It is thought that in such language the elusiveness of Being...

  10. 4 The Critique of Technology and the Poetics of “Life” (pp. 144-170)

    One of the principal aims of Heidegger’s poetics is to counter the technological attitude toward an objectified nature or earth by offering the poetic as an alternative configuration of human dwelling. In this chapter, I first present Heidegger’s critique of technology in the context of its fundamental rejection of subjectivity and then question whether the alternative offered by the poetic requires this outright rejection. I argue that a radical revision, but not eschewing, of subjectivity can be articulated in light of the idealist-romantic notion of “life” initiated by Kant’sCritique of Judgment. This demands some analysis of Kant’s notion of...

  11. 5 The Politics of Sacrifice: The Sublime and the Caesura (pp. 171-201)

    Heidegger’s views of poetic dwelling—his alternative to modern metaphysics and its reduction of the lifeworld to mere objectivity and static presence—vacillate between reference to factical life and a striving toward pure ontology, such as when he articulates the event or occurrence,Ereignis, apart from the specificity of what occurs. This duality perhaps mirrors a deeper division within Heidegger’s post—Being and Timethought, when Heidegger describes dwelling alternatively inGelassenheitterms and in terms of an original violence. As we will see in this chapter, both terminologies of dwelling are rooted in Heidegger’s arguments for the ontological significance...

  12. 6 Revolutionary Poetics and the Subject-in-Process (pp. 202-236)

    A new account of the relationship among poetic language, existence, and truth might be achieved by a new poetics of Dasein. As we have seen, Heidegger’s philosophy disqualifies the modern subject, and, afterBeing and Time, the anthropocentrism and humanism of an existential self. His poetics eschews all traces of subjectivism, particularly in elucidating the notion ofAndenken. If Heidegger in his interpretations refers to an “essential abode of the self” (EHD 129), this is to be understood in a qualified sense; Heidegger eliminates the self we have outlined in the previous chapters as nonetheless essential for Hölderlin’s poetological procedure....

  13. 7 A New Poetics of Dasein (pp. 237-258)

    In letters discussing poetic strategy, the French poet Arthur Rimbaud repeatedly uses the following phrase: “je est un autre,” or “I is someone else.”¹ This formulation might suggest, at first glance, an ecstatic abandonment of self, confirmed perhaps in the multiple viewpoints the poet assumes in “Enfance,” a poem from hisIlluminations, when he proclaims:

    Je suis le saint, en prière sur la terrasse comme

    les bêtes pacifiques …

    Je suis le savant au fauteuil sombre …

    Je suis le piéton de la grand’route …

    Je serais bien l’enfant abandonné sur la jetée …

    le petit valet

    suivant l’allée dont...

  14. Notes (pp. 259-290)
  15. Selected Bibliography (pp. 291-300)
  16. Index (pp. 301-308)