By Mark Noble
In American Poetic Materialism from Whitman to Stevens, Mark Noble examines writers who proportion the belief that personhood may be understood as a fabric occasion. via new readings of Whitman, Emerson, Santayana, and Stevens, Noble uncovers a literary heritage wrestling with the results of its personal materialism, and asks what this account of shared materiality can let us know in regards to the so much profoundly secular versions of the fashionable topic. At a second whilst a number of new versions of the connection among human adventure and its actual floor stream between severe theorists and philosophers of technological know-how, American Poetic Materialism explores poets who've lengthy requested what our materiality can let us know approximately our customers for brand new versions of our fabric selves.
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Additional info for American Poetic Materialism from Whitman to Stevens (Cambridge Studies in American Literature and Culture)
To account for such an addition means to concede that materiality gets one only so far in any attempt to rethink experience – that the alterity of the objective world still requires speculative mediation. To neglect to make such an account risks converting one’s materialism into an unwitting idealism – succumbing, that is, to the blurring of distinctions that characterizes the sensation of “intimacy” in James’s prose. If this aporia often goes unacknowledged, it is nevertheless an ineradicable part of the history of philosophical materialism.
5 The peculiar difficulty introduced here involves the recognition that attempts to collapse the philosophical dualism that divides object from subject by grounding human experience in the historical specificity of its material condition only ever reproduce that dualism in a more cryptic form. Such work does not expunge the transcendent logic from the relation between subjectivity and objectivity so much as relocate it to a less conspicuous, and perhaps more insidious, materialist closet. For Adorno, however, this does not mean we should abandon attempts to understand subjectivity in material-historical terms.
Aporetic materialism negotiates between the extraordinary gains and peculiar losses that follow from the conversion of persons to atoms, for instance, though without resolving that tension in any definitive way. For James, that negotiation addresses the degree to which our desire for a sensation that transcends contingency relies on felt contact with the same physical world that generates our contingency. For Adorno, similarly, it describes an ineffability central to our understanding of what it means to think the relation between subject and object.
American Poetic Materialism from Whitman to Stevens (Cambridge Studies in American Literature and Culture) by Mark Noble