Science, Politics, and Friendship in the Works of Thomas Lovell Beddoes

Science, Politics, and Friendship in the Works of Thomas Lovell Beddoes

by Ute Berns


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781611493672
Publisher: University of Delaware Press
Publication date: 11/16/2011
Pages: 382
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Ute Berns is professor of English literature at the University of Hamburg.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction Thomas Lovell Beddocs: Critical Perspectives xi

The Critical Significance of Death's Jest-Book

Part 1 Discursive and Tropological Preliminaries

Chapter 1 Discursive Horizons in Beddoes's Letters 3

An Early Poetic Vision of Death's Jest-Book Immortality, or the Ubiquity of History Medicine-History-Biography

Chapter 2 Visual Figuration and Performativity in Death's Jest-Book 31

Death's Jest-Book: Drama or Poetry? Plots, Triangles, and Medievalism Principal Tropes (I): "Death's Jest-Book" Principal Tropes (II): "Triumph of Death" and "Dance of Death"

Part 2 The Politics of Revolutionary Bonapartism

Chapter 3 The Republican Promise of Revolutionary Bonapartism 67

Napoleonic Legacies-Anglo-German Contexts Bonapartist Leadership and the Insurrectionary Brotherhood

Fashioning Rebellion as "History"

"The Median Supper": A Source of Epic Tensions

Chapter 4 Roman Ideals in "Unroman Times" 99

The Model of Rome

Roman Heroism and Nostalgia

Caesarism and the Crime of "Modern Treason"

A Medievalized Prince and a Neo-Elizabethan Plotter

Chapter 5 Caesarist Visions of History 127

Comparative Anatomy and History

Caesarism and Romantic Discourse

Caesarism, Conspiracy, and Collusion

The Politics of the Aesthetic: Performative

Force as Radical Practice

Part 3 The Radical Politics of Friendship

Chapter 6 Friendship and Fraternity in Crisis 155

The Discourse of Friendship-Classical Heritage and Anglo-German Contexts

Schiller's "Philosophische Briefe": Beddoes's

Translation of Friendship

Binding Oaths and Failing Triangles

Engendering the Sublime Figure of a Virile


Chapter 7 Friendship(-) Haunting Sovereignty 187

Mourning and Denial in the Resurrection Scene

Shakespearean Spectres: Self, Sovereignty, and the Ghost of the Friend

Invisible Perils

Chapter 8 Resignifying the Friend 213

Shaping "Thin Air": Invisibility and Romantic Discourse

The Political Ambivalence of Friendship

The Politics of Dramatic Form in Death's Jest-Book and Sardanapalus

Part 4 History and the Sciences of Life

Chapter 9 The Discourse of "Life" in "Squats on a Toad-Stool" 237

German Naturphilosophie, Blumenbach, and the Concept of the Biltlungstrieb

Scientfic Visions and their Poetic Negotiation

Beddoes's "Squats on a Toad-Stool" and Goethe's

"Metamorphose der Tiere"

Scientific Figurations of the Social and the Literary

Chapter 10 Life Science, Natural History, and Politics in Death's Jest-Book 269

The History of the Earth and the Structure of Death's Jest-Book

The History of the Earth as a Book of Animal Fables

A Lecture-Sermon about Life, Death, and the History of the Earth

Part 5 Toward a New Theater

Chapter 11 Performing Genres and the Uses of Illegitimacy 301

Contemporary Theater and the Significance of Genre Harlequinade and Bonapartism's Plebeian Features Masque, Antimasque, and the Dance of Death

"Old Ghosts" and the European Avant-Garde

Bibliography 321

Index 341

About the Author 353

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