Romanticism after Auschwitz
Romanticism After Auschwitz reveals how post-Holocaust testimony remains romantic, and shows why romanticism must therefore be rethought. The book argues that what literary historians have traditionally called “romanticism,” and characterized as a literary movement stretching roughly between 1785 and 1832, should be redescribed in light of two circumstances. The first is the specific inadequacy of literary-historical models before “romantic” works. The second is the particular function that these unsettling aspects of “romantic” works have after Auschwitz. The book demonstrates that certain figures (of speech, writing, and argument) central to normative accounts of “romanticism,” serve in their most radical—most genuinely “romantic”—form as vehicles for posing a conception of life (and death) revealed in the camps. In these pages, Agamben meets Wordsworth, Shakespeare meets Celan, film meets lyric poetry, survivors’ accounts meet fiction, de Man encounters Nancy. The book offers new readings of highly canonical works—Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Wordsworth and Coleridge’s Lyrical Ballads, Alain Resnais’s Night and Fog—and introduces unfamiliar texts. It elaborates a fascinating account of the rhetoric of ethical dispositions and gives its readers an attentive, moving way of understanding the condition of human survival after the Holocaust.
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Romanticism Testimony Prosopopoeia
Testimony and Trope in Frankenstein
Anthropomorphizing the Human
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aesthetic Agamben animal Antelme Antelme's anthropomorphism apostrophe appears archive Auschwitz autobiography bears witness becomes Blanchot breath calls camp Cayrol's Celan's translation claim Coleridge's dead death describes endurance essay ethical explains face failure Felman fiction film flesh and blood Frankenstein Gesammelte Werke gesture Giorgio Agamben Gorgon Gubar Holocaust Human Race Ibid impossibility Infinite Conversation insomnia interruption Jacques Derrida language Levi Levi's Levi's poem Levinas literature living Lyrical Ballads M. H. Abrams Man's Maurice Blanchot means metonymy monster mourning Muselmann Nietzsche's nonhuman novel Nuit et brouillard passage Paul Celan personification poet poetic poetry poetry's possibility preface proper name prose prosopopoeia question reader reading relation remains Remnants of Auschwitz Resnais response Robert Antelme romantic romanticism seems sense Shakespeare's sonnet Shelley's sonnet 71 speak speech suggests survival survivor testimony tion trans trope truth turn understands understood Victor voice wakefulness Walton Wiesel words Wordsworth writes