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The Expression of the Inexpressible in Eugenio Montale's Poetry: Metaphor, Negation, and Silence

Overview

Locating the greatest Italian poet of the twentieth century, Eugenio Montale, firmly within European Modernism, this book examines the struggle with language that is central to his work. In its unravelling of the inexpressibility paradox, the book offers a new reading of Montale's early verse, and reveals how in articles and metapoetic comments Montale gives us insights into both his poetics and the whole process of expression.

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Overview

Locating the greatest Italian poet of the twentieth century, Eugenio Montale, firmly within European Modernism, this book examines the struggle with language that is central to his work. In its unravelling of the inexpressibility paradox, the book offers a new reading of Montale's early verse, and reveals how in articles and metapoetic comments Montale gives us insights into both his poetics and the whole process of expression.

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Product Details

Table of Contents

About this Book
1 Introduction: The Development of the Inexpressibility Topos in European Literature 1
2 Eugenio Montale and the Inexpressible 15
Writing: Expression or Creation? 15
Identifying the Inexpressible 29
Re-Evaluating Terms 47
3 Metaphor and Figurative Language 49
Disparity and Tension 52
Defamiliarization 61
Networks of Metaphor 70
The Montalian 'Object' 76
4 Negation 97
Hypothesis and Doubt 97
The via negativa 101
The Way of De-Antropomorphism 103
The Way of Erasure 112
The Way of Contradiction 130
Negation: The Rhetoric of Failure? 140
5 Silence 145
Silence: The Potent Myth 146
The Purpose of Silence 151
Silence as Withholding: The Woman and God 164
Silence as Withholding: Secrecy and Mystery 171
Appendix 177
Bibliography 180
General Index 193
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