Intratextual Baudelaire: The Sequential Fabric of the Fleurs du mal and Spleen de Paris by Randolph Paul Runyon provides a new and provocative answer to the question that has intrigued readers for years: did the poet arrange the Fleurs du mal in a meaningful order? Runyon believes so, but not in the way most have conceived the question.
Barbey d'Aurevilly's claim that there was a "secret architecture" hidden in the Fleurs has long misled scholars by leading them to look for some overarching hierarchical organization, when they should have been looking for how the poems actually fit together, each to each, in the sequential fabric of the text. This is what Runyon has done, in a meticulous reading of every poem and its place in the sequence. Intratextual Baudelaire provides the most thorough analysis available of the textual changes Baudelaire made between the first and second editions and shows why he made them: so that the sequential structure would be preserved despite the addition of new poems and the deletion of those judged obscene.
Extending his analysis to the Spleen de Paris with the same attention to detail and awareness of textual changes, Runyon shows that Baudelaire's prose-poem collection likewise displays a rigorous sequential structure. Both collections are revealed as marvels of self-referential intratextuality. Whether one completely agrees with Runyon or not, Intratextual Baudelaire will certainly generate lively discussion among French studies scholars.
|Publisher:||Ohio State University Press|
|Product dimensions:||6.30(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.90(d)|
About the Author
Randolph Paul Runyon is professor of French at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 The Fabric of the First Edition: The Fleurs of 1857 17
Chapter 2 The Sequence Rebuilt: The Fleurs of 1861 120
Chapter 3 The "serpent tout entier": Le Spleen de Paris 189
Appendix A The Order of the Poems in the 1857 and 1861 Editions 263
Appendix B The Order of the Poems in Le Spleen de Paris 269
Works Cited 271
Index to Bandelaire's Works 277
General Index 281