Nineteenth-Century French Poetry: Introductions to Close Reading / Edition 1

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Presenting a new approach to the study of nineteenth-century French poetry, each essay in this collection focuses on the detailed organization of a single poem. Eleven essays, written from a wide range of critical and theoretical viewpoints, cover poets from Lamartine to Mallarmé and Laforgue. The method of close reading has been adopted in order to effect an introduction to the analysis of the "basics" of poetic language (sound, meter, syntax, etc.) and in order to explore and illustrate some of the claims and arguments about poetry arising from developments in modern literary theory. Theoretical positions are posed and tested in the terms of practical analysis and interpretation. Prendergast's introduction to the volume situates the essays in a series of general perspectives and contexts, and Clive Scott has provided an appendix on French versification.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"I can well imagine a course on the advanced undergraduate and/or masters level being built around this book, with each chapter supplemented by an additional article or two on the same poem for purposes of comparison and poems referred to secondarily in the text examined in greater detail." Charles D. Minahen, SubStance

"...presents, as it intends to do, a clear, thorough, and intelligent introduction to contemporary literary theory and to what have long in fact figured among its preferred critical objects, nineteenth-century poetic texts." Mary Lewis Shaw, Nineteenth-Century French Studies

"This is an important collection....the writers of these essays have directed their efforts at all-encompassing readings that leave the reader satisfied that the texts in question have been examined in a thorough manner, with a genuine concern for an understanding of the poems in their entirety. The essays in this collection will undoubtedly encourage the students' efforts to understand the intricacies of French poetry and to appreciate the richness of the many theoretical approaches at their disposal." William Thompson, European Romantic Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521347747
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 1/28/1990
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 5.43 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Table of Contents

1. Introduction Christopher Prendergast; 2. The poem as hypothesis of origin: Lamartine's Le Lac Eric Gans; 3. The rhetoric of contemplation: Hugo's La Pente de la réverie Victor Brombert; 4. The designs of prosody: Vigny's La Mort du loup Clive Scott; 5. The lyric persona: Nerval's El Desdichado Rae Beth Gordon; 6. Under-reading at noon: Leconte de Lisle's Midi Mary Ann Caws; 7. Intertextuality and interpretation: Baudelaire's Correspondances Jonathan Culler; 8. Questions of Metaphor: Gautier's La Nue Christopher Prendergast; 9. Training for modernity: Verlaine's Le Paysage dans le cadre des portiéres … Ross Chambers; 10. Sylleptic Symbols: Rimbaud's Mémoire Michael Riffaterre; 11. Poetry and cliche: Laforgue's L'Hiver qui vient Peter Collier; 12. Genius at nightfall: Mallarmé's Quand l'ombre menacé de la fatale loi … Malcolm Bowie; 13. Appendix - French versification: a summary Clive Scott; References and suggestions for further reading.

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