Metaphysics

Coleridge, Language and the Sublime: From Transcendence to by Christopher Stokes (auth.)

By Christopher Stokes (auth.)

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Extra info for Coleridge, Language and the Sublime: From Transcendence to Finitude

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How can Coleridge’s oratory escape a corruption of oratory that seems totally pervasive? 15 We may take Jones’s dichotomy between ‘sociological fact and individualized fantasy’ further, for this tension will show us precisely the fault-line within ‘Fears in Solitude’, and ultimately lead us back to ‘France: An Ode’. We began with the idea of the speaker leaving sequestered silence to answer incoming voices of tumult and strife. Yet there The Impassioned Self in the 1798 Quarto 47 is another important set of voices which ‘Fears in Solitude’ confronts: Coleridge’s political critics.

Longinus holds that ‘real sublimity contains much food for reflection … and makes a strong and ineffaceable impression on the memory’ (p. 148), and Coleridge repeats the notion: Easily remembered from their briefness, and interesting alike to the eye and the affections, these are the poems which we can ‘lay up in our heart, and our soul,’ and repeat them ‘when we walk by the way, and when we lie down, and when we rise up’. 1139) Equally, just as Longinus notes that ‘we come to believe we have created what we have only heard’ (p.

Coleridge, the sonnet and the effusion The kinship between Coleridge’s early speaking position and the Longinian tradition can be seen by looking at his two most comprehensive, early statements of poetic theory: the prefaces to Poems on Various Subjects and A Sheet of Sonnets (both 1796). 24 Initially, the argument of the Sheet’s preface would hardly seem to suggest that this context involved 28 Coleridge, Language and the Sublime the Longinian tradition. 25 Given the tendency of the Longinian tradition to privilege the epic and large-scale, the privacy and intimacy of the sonnet seems to count against its sublimity.

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