Examining the relationship between German poetry, philosophy, and visual media around 1900, Carsten Strathausen argues that the poetic works of Rainer Maria Rilke, Hugo von Hofmannsthal, and Stephan George focused on the visible gestalt of language as a means of competing aesthetically with the increasing popularity and "reality effect" of photography and film.
Poetry around 1900 self-reflectively celebrated its own words as both transparent signs and material objects, Strathausen says. In Aestheticism, this means that language harbors the potential to literally present the things it signifies. Rather than simply describing or picturing the physical experience of looking, as critics have commonly maintained, modernist poetry claims to enable a more profound kind of perception that grants intuitive insights into the very texture of the natural world.
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The Speaking Gaze of Modernity
Intuition and Language
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Adorno aesthetic Aestheticism Aestheticist poetry allegedly argues artistic Auguste Rodin autonomy become Bergson body Chandos claims constitutive critics critique crucial culture Dasein deconstruction difference discourse elan vital emphasizes expression eyes film Gare Montparnasse gazelle Gedichte George's poetry Gestalt Giorgio Agamben guage Heidegger Heidegger's hence hermeneutic Hofmannsthal Hofmannsthal's human Husserl ideal images inherent intuition Kittler Kunst language-crisis Leben Letter linguistic literally look of things material meaning metaphor metaphysical modernist poetry movement nature noema nonetheless notion object paradox perception perspective phenomenological philosophical physical poet poetic language poetry around 1900 posthermeneutic precisely present primordial pure Rainer Maria Rilke reader reading reality realm reference regard reification remains Rilke Rilke's poem Rilke's poetry Romantic seeks sense signifier simply space speaking gaze speech Sprache stanza Stefan George stop making sense Teppich theory tion truth utopian visual visual perception voice Walter Benjamin Wellbery Werke words and things Wort writing