Fragments of the Feminine Sublime in Friedrich Schlegel and James Joyce: The Labor-Liberal Alliance

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SUNY Press, Jan 1, 1998 - Literary Criticism - 280 pages
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This is the first book to extensively study Joyce's work in the context of Germanic Romantic literary theory. It illustrates how Joyce's modern and postmodern innovation of the novel finds its theoretical roots in Friedrich Schlegel's conception of the Romantic, fragmentary novel. Verstraete discusses the relevance of Schlegel's early Romanticism to the young Joyce's essays on symbolic-realistic drama and argues that what has traditionally been described as Joyce's personal appropriation of Hegel's dialectics can better be understood in terms of Schlegel's ironic approach to philosophy. She relates Schlegel's concepts of irony and of the fragment to his feminist critique of nineteenth-century bourgeois art, and of Kant's categories of the beautiful and the sublime. She argues that Schlegel's ironization of the sublime yields a rhetorical subversion of the opposition between male artist and female model, art and reality, as well as between the sublime and the beautiful. Verstraete illustrates this critical and political force of what she calls the "feminine sublime" at work in Schlegel's essays on Greek comedy and in his novel Lucinde. The book demonstrates how the Romantic (feminine) sublime, as the site where autonomous art generates its own critique, offers us the tools with which to interpret Joyce's postmodern innovations of Romantic art.
  

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Contents

Friedich Schlegels Theory of the Fragment
29
A History of the Sublime
37
Gender and Genre in Aristophanes
54
The Romantic Novel Lucinde
64
From Addressing to CrossDressing Some Afterthoughts on Lucinde
109
Joyces Drama and the Conflicts of Realism
116
The Gender Politics of Joyces Theory and Practice of Drama
134
From the Sublime to the Ridiculous Is But a Step
155
Medicine Midwifery and the Making of Childbirth Hornes Sublime Porte in Ulysses
169
In the Wake of Criticism
190
Conclusion
215
Notes
221
List of Works Cited
253
Index
271
Copyright

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