By Harriet Murphy
Now translated into greater than twenty-two languages, Die Blendung, identified in its English translation as both The Tower of Babel or Auto-da-Fe, has develop into whatever of a favored novel. Canetti and Nietzsche is the 1st full-length examine of Canetti's novel to do justice to the profound implications of its exceptionally unique humorousness, one that quite often unearths its expression in facetiousness. It is familiar with facetiousness, via Nietzsche, as a functionality art--an artwork that equates fact with the knowledge that lifestyles might be concerning the attempt we positioned into inventive acts. interpreting either the idea and perform of humor, Murphy relates her personal theoretical insights to the overseas debates in regards to the impact of political correctness and the liberal Left inside and out the schools.
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Additional info for Canetti and Nietzsche: Theories of Humor in Die Blendung (S U N Y Series, Margins of Literature)
Next page > < previous page page_27 next page > Page 27 This seems to be problematic once again, only inasmuch as we have, still, no indication that Die Blendung desires to have any claim to a paradigm or to referentially applicable notions of behavioral patterns within a social universe. A reader's encounter with Die Blendung will be entirely unlike his encounter with chaos in an extra-textual reality, for the crystal image insists on shape, force, and strength. Canetti is implying here that the world of his novel will be the inverse of the chaos encountered in any given extra-textual world, for his novel is to be form itself, not formlessness.
Despite the use of the philosophical word "Erkenntnis," which raises the idea inherent in epistemology, namely the issue of knowledge, of how we penetrate things and understand them, we have to reflect on the sense in which Canetti really means knowledge can be attained. One cannot argue from the above that Canetti's intention is to penetrate to the essence of chaos per se. " What emerges, later on, is an idea already briefly mentioned, namely the idea of the importance of the writer's respect for the original form of matter: "In Wtrklichkeit hatte alles eine Richtung und alles nahm überhand, Expansion war eine Haupteigenschaft von Menschen und Dingen, um davon etwas zu fassen, mußte man die Dinge auseinandernehmen.
We are talking about a direct and startling encounter, whereby the novel dazzles a reader's imagination dramatically. Yet Canetti's fascination with the metaphysical effect on the reader's imagination of his novel is one that excludes the capacity of that imagination for critical reflection, or for that poetic moment described by Plato when the imagination, stimulated by a literary work, has the freedom to recognize something already known, but which lies dormant in the soul. The stress on devastating effects shows that Canetti is not interested in using the novel as a means of either furthering a questioning attitude to a given reality in the sense of appealing to a reader's intellect, reason, and imagination, where these can be harnessed to particular ends, or allowing the reader the freedom to enjoy a moment of poetic vision.