Blake, Kierkegaard, and the Spectre of Dialectic

Blake, Kierkegaard, and the Spectre of Dialectic

by Lorraine Clark


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This study traces affinities between the late prophetic poems of William Blake and the work of the philosopher Soren Kierkegaard. Both feature concepts (the Spectre fought by Blake's poet-prophet Los, and Kierkegaard's idea of "dread") embodying a spirit of philosophical negation, skepticism, and dialectic which the writers sought to resist. Lorraine Clark uses Kierkegaard's philosophy to illuminate Blake's prophecies, showing that both offer the basis for a profound critique of romanticism, while themselves partaking of some of the ideals and tensions central to our understanding of the romantic movement.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780521110471
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 05/07/2009
Edition description: Reissue
Pages: 252
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.60(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements; A note on texts and abbreviations; Introduction; 1. The spectre and the logic of error; 2. The spectre as Kierkegaard's concept of dread; 3. The spectre and the line of life; 4. Mastered irony as the ground of human community; 5. Irony and authority; Conclusion; Los and the spectre: master and slave in the labour of the negative; Notes; Bibliography.

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