ANNA-TERESA TYMIENIECKA The World Institute for Advanced Phenomenological Research and Learning Belmont, Massachusetts THE EXISTENTIAL COORDINATES OF THE HUMAN CONDITION: POETIC- EPIC- TRAGIC

The Literary

Edited by


Published under the auspices of The World Institute for Advanced Phenomenological Research and Learning A·T. Tymieniecka, President

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The Existential coordinates of the human condition, poetic -epic• tragic.

(Analecta Husserliana ; v. 18) A selection of studies presented at three annual seminars of the International for Phenomenology and , 1980-1982. "Published under the auspices of the World Institute for Advanced Phenomenological Research and Learning." Includes bibliographical references and index. 1. Literature-Addresses, essays, lectures. I. Tymieniecka, Anna-Teresa. II. International Society for Phenomenology and Literature. III. World Institute for Advanced Phenomenological Research and Learning. IV. Series. B3279.H94A129 vol. 18. [PN45] 142'.7s [809] 84-1960 ISBN 978-94-011-7987-4 ISBN 978-94-009-6315-3 (eBook) DOI 10.1007/978-94-009-6315-3

All Rights Reserved © 1984 by Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht Originally published D. Reidel Publishing Company in 1984 Softcover reprint of the hardcover 1st edition 1984 No part of the material protected by this copyright notice may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by any information storage and retrieval system, without written permission from the copyright owner TABLE OF CONTENTS

ANNA-TERESA TYMIENIECKA I 1'he : The Poetic, Epic and Tragic as the Existential Coordinates of the Human Condition ix




ANNA-TERESA TYMIENIECKA I Aesthetic Enjoyment and Poetic Sense. Poetic Sense: The Irreducible in Literature 3 WOLFGANG WITTKOWSKII Movement in German Poems 23 MARIA-TERESA BERTELLONII Why Be a Poet? 37 LOIS OPPENHEIM I The Field of Poetic Constitution 47


CYNTHIA A. MILLER I The Poet in the Poem: A Phenomenological Analysis of Anne Sexton's 'Briar Rose (Sleeping Beauty)' 61 JEANNE RUPPERT I Nature, Feeling, and Disclosure in the Poetry of Wallace Stevens 75


MEENA ALEXANDER I "Failings from Us, Vanishings ...":Com- position and the Structure of Loss 91 ZYGMUNT ADAMCZEWSKII Poetic Thinking to Be 99


L. M. FINDLAY 1 From Helikon to Aetna: The Precinct of Poetry in Hesiod, Empedokles, Holderlin, and Arnold 119 CHRISTOPH EYKMAN I What Can the Poem Do Today? The Self- Evaluation of Poets after 1945 141 TERESA GELLA I Poetry as Essential Graphs 157 vi TABLE OF CONTENTS



L. M. FINDLAY 1 The Shield and the Horizon: Homeric Ekphrasis and 163 GILA RAMRAS-RAUCH I The of Man in the Hebraic Epic 175 JESSE G ELLRICH I On Medieval Interpretation and Mythology 185 VALDO H. VIGLIELMO I The Epic Element in Japanese Literature 195 BEVERLY ANN SCHLACK I A Long Day's Journey into Night: The Historicity of Human Existence Unfolding in Virginia Woolf's 209


ANGEL MEDINA I The Existential Sources of Rhetoric: A Com- parison Between Traditional Epic and Modern 227 PATRICIA M. LAWLOR I and the Flux of Human Ex- perience 241 CHRISTOPH EYKMAN I The Literary Diary as a Witness of Man's Historicity: Heinrich Boll, Karl Krolow, Gunter Grass, and Peter Handke 249 VICTOR CARRABINO I The French Nouveau Roman: The Ulti- mate Expression of Impressionism 261



MAR LIES KRONEGGER I The Birth of Tragedy out of the Spirit of : Claude!, Milhaud and the Oresteia 273 ANNA-TERESA TYMIENIECKA I Tragedy and the Completion of Freedom 295 SHERL YN ABDOO I Hardy's Jude: The Pursuit of the Ideal as Tragedy 307 TABLE OF CONTENTS vii

WOLFGANG WITTKOWSKI I Values and German Tragedy 1770- 1840 319 A. BEN CHEHIDA 1 La Destinee de Ia tragedie dans Ia culture Islamique 333 EUGENE KAELIN 1 Toward a Theory of Contemporary Tragedy 341


BEVERLY KENNEDY I The Re-emergence of Tragedy in Late Medieval England: Sir Thomas Malory's Marte Darthur 363 MICHAEL PLATT I Tragical, Comical, Historical 379 FRAN<:;OISE RAVAUX I The Denial of Tragedy: The Self-Reflexive Process of the Creative Activity and the French New 401


JOHN LYONS 1 Tragic Closure and the Carnelian Wager 409 BARBARA WOSHINSKY I Intuition in Britannicus 417 MARILYN STEW ART I Myth and Tragic in La Celestina and Romeo and Juliet 425 BERNADETTE LINTZ MURPHY I Du desordre a l'ordre: le role de Ia violence dans Horace 435



JACQUES GARELLI 1 The of Writing as an Apprehension of the Enigma of Being-in-the-World 451 MICHAEL D. RILEY I The of the Body: Merleau-Ponty on Perception, Language, and Literature 479


FELIX MARTINEZ-BONATI I Fiction and the Transposition of Presence 495 JESSE GELLRICH I The Structure of 505 viii TABLE OF CONTENTS

MARLIES KRONEGGER 1 Literary Impressionism and Phenom- enology: Affinities and Contrasts 521 PETER STOWELL I Phenomenology and Literary Impressionism: The Prismatic Sensibility 535


ADN AN MOUSSALL Y I Un modele d'analyse dy texte dramatique 547 JOSEPH MARGOLIS I The Problem of Reading, Phenomenologi- cally or Otherwise 559



The investigation of the literary genres - the poetic, epic and tragi-comic - as the existential coordinates of the human condition has a double relevance: to the life significance of literature, and to the metaphysics of the human condition. This enquiry calls for a context that includes them both. The literary genres are, in fact, in need of a new, philosophical investigation: they require philosophical reflection to go to their ultimate source in order to have their irreducible residuum, which persists through innumerable fluctuations of their historical genesis, retrieved and estimated with respect to their artistic and aesthetic role and validity. In turn, they offer to philoso• phy a thread to follow in assessing the significance of art and its role in man's meaning-inventing. To begin with, let us affirm that and literature - art at large - stem from a common source: the invention of the sense of experience. "Inventing the sense" means for the living individual crossing the borderline of the strictly vital significance of the "external" life-elements, as well as his "inward" promptings, propulsions, reactions, etc., to that of the specifically human significance of life. It means orchestrating his functions of sensing, intellecting and imagining in a of reflection upon himself, his life and its meaning; it means the origin of culture and the establishment of the specifically human life-world. 1 In this spectrum of studies we continue in an individually diversified fashion, proper to our common work, to probe into this ultimate source common to philosophy and literature.2 We may here follow our initial plan, in which we proposed a compre• hensive investigation of the source-relationship between philosophy and literature. 3 This study should, on the one hand, yield profound and inno• vative perspectives for the understanding and interpretation of literature in its role in man's self-interpretation in existence; on the other hand, it will lead us to the hitherto inaccessible germinal phase of this self-interpretation itself: the factors, criteria, aims of its expansive elan, and its limits. We have begun this twofold investigation through the descent to the "creative crucibles" of man's sense-inventing for the sake of his own cultural ix

A-T. Tymieniecka (ed.}, Analecta Husserliana, Vol. XVIII, ix-xvi. © 1984 by D. Reidel Publishing Company. X ANNA-TERESA TYMIENIECKA individualization - as well as for that correlated with it - of his human life• world. Literary analysis leads us through the labyrinth of the creative pro• cesses, with their structural schema and their pulp of experiential complexes; philosophical reflection scrutinizes the many-sided relevances of the creative endeavor and distills from their interfaces moments pregnant with various kinds of significance for man's self-interpretative effort and . Both meet ultimately at their common source: in the conjectural inquiry into the Human Condition, where the subliminal virtualities of the human inventive power and its shaping proficiencies both meet: the promptings of nostalgias, hopes, and Visionary dreams, as well as their limitative measure of their fulfillment. In this poetics we have outlined a meeting ground, which may be progressively unraveled in a metaphysical inquiry into man's creative forge. 4 Indeed, the striking phenomenon - when we think of it - from which the literary analysis and theory usually begin, as from a "natural" state of affairs, is the most intimate intermingling and interpenetration between the "literary language," "aesthetic" or "poetic" language - having its established ground-work in literary works - and our thinking, evaluating, and feeling of "everyday life." It is as if poetry, fiction, drama, and comedy, with their distinctive ways of viewing and approaching human life and the human world, would not only penetrate our actual "pedestrian" thinking of the world and ourselves, but even fuse with the sense of enactment of our actual existence. It is not enough to attribute to the aesthetic element in life the role of giving it a "taste." It is true that the aesthetic aspect, with its vast range of nuances along various spectres (e.g., of the beautiful, grotesque, sublime, nostalgic, infinite, ominous, and so on) gives "flavor" to life. Like various condiments added to plain nourishing substance they lift it in innumerable mixtures from the simply palatable quality to those of "tasty" (delicious, ...); thus the advent of the aesthetic element transposes the narrow pedestrian "quality of life" into a different key. Yet unlike the condiments, the aesthetic element does not limit itself to the quality of taste. On the contrary, it is merely its secondary function, itself the result of the primary one: sense-giving. The inverse emphasis, namely, upon the ingredient or even substantial reference of literature to "reality" of life, is the ever-recurring subject of puzzlement and investigation on the side of literary analysis and theory. To distinguish sharply between the vital significance of the elements of the human language - as expressed by individual life-proceedings, demeanor, stand on life-matters, reactions, etc. comprising all types of life-manifestation - and the aesthetic or more specifically "poetic" significance of the in• numerable means of our communication with the Other, is a vain task, so THE THEME xi much are they at the borderline fused together in infinite nuances into the common task of weaving various segments of man's selfinterpretation• in-existence. In this basic task of all human functioning, the vital and the aesthetic senses - which are differentiated into various degrees of com• plexity - are, albeit in different registers, equally instrumental in promoting individual human existence. Yet in the creative works, works of man's art brought to their complete accomplishment, the aesthetic element in its full measure distinguishes itself radically from the concrete, survival-subservient, vital significance. It is of crucial importance for the searching mind to ask - and to know - what is the source, the validity, and the varying conditions of the signifi• cance he himself gives to the innumerable moments of his life-enactment. Indeed, it is not enough for man to enact his life in establishing passively its significant course by implementing the postulates of Nature's interest in his frame; he seeks to individualize himself beyond them in order to give it its specific, its very own significance; he has to attempt to "understand" it. He has to ask, What am I really after in my evaluations, stands on matters, manifestations of my feelings and self-appreciation as I establish the meaning• fulness of my life-course? From what do I make my satisfactions, defeats, ideals, aims - as well as the criteria of their evaluation? That is, What kinds of meanings do I choose to give to the events, efforts and struggles of my life and how do they emerge and whence? The human being undeniably draws significant elements for the apparatus, by means of which he establishes the network of his meaning-bestowing upon everything in his concern, not only from the vital factors but also from the aesthetic ones. Stated differently, we may say that man feeds himself not exclusively on bread but concurrently on art, and especially on literature. Beginning with the invention of , in which men and events appear larger than life, musing about one's feeling by improvising a song, etc., up the ladder to the most elaborate and skillful literary forms, all of these artistic efforts belong to life. They bring into life's narrow frame perspectives of significance that correspond to the inner• most longings of man. It is no wonder that literary analysis attempts to pry, as inquisitively as its respective tools allow it, into linguistic forms of the literary text in which the author, like a sorcerer, has enclosed a unique "key" to the enigmatic . In order to find this key both the critic and the scrutinize the entire range of significant elements in the author's expression - language, values, action, etc. - and seek their relevances in life, human con• sciousness, the world, and society. Yet in no single line of research, nor xii ANNA-TERESA TYMIENIECKA within one schema established by intuitive conjectures, may we reach con• clusive answers. All the attempts, however revealing, open either a sector or give us an "overview" - one out of many - of the genesis of this meaning• fulness; but none alone bring us to its source. No doubt we have to seek a point of crossing of all ways, indicating the poles upon which their mutual distantiating as well as intergenerative fusion is suspended: a context within which the significance of various life-functions - the vital-intellectual-aes• thetic among them - is projected, starting from the germinal virtualities and proceeding upward into various segments of the self-interpretative effort of man. Such a context must be established in order to treat these questions plausibly. Such a context has been offered by Moritz Geiger, the founder of phenom• enological aesthetics, and others before him in the so-called "aesthetic situa• tion." No doubt, the aesthetic significance is suspended upon three poles: the author, the work, the recipient/reader/spectator. Within this tri-polar situation the "meaning" of the literary work, established by the author within it, is scrutinized by the recipient with a view to being received and "understood" by him. These three poles each present a selection of constants and variables which seem to account for this process. The situation of each - the author, work, reader - in the historical period of time with its sets of significant clues to interpret life elements, the tastes and artistic conventions of the period, cultural trends and their aspirations, are the constants which allow room for varying historical circumstances within the author, the work and the recipient, all three. However, in spite of the unique singularity of the set of historically conditioned variables which the author as a human being - who unfolds his individual beingness out of a specific set of circum• stances, himself endowed necessarily with some specific bents, modes of sensibility, passional strivings, likes and idiosyncracies, tendencies and ideals - brings into his creative works, whatever "message" or "vision" he conveys through them, they are set in the form of a universal schema. His "mes• sage" or vision, as the key to the significance of existence, springs, indeed, from the most particular and specific ground; and yet, by entering into the work of art, it becomes purified of concrete trivia and imponderably subjective features. A work of art incarnates aesthetic significance only insofar as it transposes that significance from suggestive, uncrystallized, evanescent concreteness into the pluri-vocal and yet universalized key; the work of art thus crystallizes the concrete complex into one predominant, significant form, and thereby accomplishes the metamorphosis. The work thus suspended in an intentional mode in midair, pregnant with the meaningful THE THEME xiii content of life, but emptied of its juices, draws its existential sustenance from its intrinsic appeal to the infinitely complex singularity of the recipient. The reader or spectator is called upon to lend its lived substance which she/he draws from the concrete entanglement within her/his life-world. To come to its own in the exfoliation in full of its virtual endowment, in which its clue is ensorcelled, it needs again the full-fledged singular concreteness of the reader or spectator to fill its empty constants with palpitating variables of life-significance. It is to be granted to the proponents of structural aesthetics that the intentional context puts literary analysis upon a firm ground and is only too well known to the phenomenologically oriented critic or philosopher. However, it must be restated. But in fact it has to be observed that this "aesthetic situation," in spite of its indubitable merits, exhibits fundamental shortcomings. No doubt the tri-polar approach to the understanding of the work of art is helpful in establishing the interpretation of the artwork as a specific singular text within the radius of meaningfulness which it encircles. However, this type of interpretation has only the text as its objective and its guideline and does not focus upon the condition of its origin. The interpre• tation within this context draws upon the "last" stage of the genesis of meaningfulness as acquired by the author-work-reader within their respective life-worlds. It varies with respect to the historical situation of each. In this way it uses and takes for granted the entire apparatus of "understanding" acquired within the historical process, which, at the one extreme, is incarnated within the work by the author partaking of it and, at the other extreme, is to be brought in by the reader or spectator as also pertinent to it in his "education." Consequently, this type of approach, which the intentional "situation" yields, is itself fleeting on the tides of history and of the cultural progress of human kind taking its very condition for granted. Thus, it can only offer us answers relative to the specific phases of culture; our search, in contrast, is for the ultimate origin of the meaningfUlness of the aesthetic significance as such and its relation to the vital significance. We cannot find this origin by scrutinizing an intentional model; moreover, we cannot find the answer to a state of affairs involving the entire human beingness, assuming human functioning as reduced to intentionality. Lastly, in seeking for an "understanding" of the significance of art - its source, genesis, dependencies - we cannot expect to find it in the already-established cultural life of either the author or the reader. Their "cultural development" might be decisive for the fixating, on the one hand, and grasping, on the other xiv ANNA-TERESA TYMIENIECKA hand, of the concrete, contextual meaning of the work. Nevertheless, in creat• ing a specific work the author is already virtually in possession of culturally relative skills to incarnate his innermost vision in the text; the reader, to understand it, has in turn to pertinently develop his aesthetic sense on the one hand, and his life-reflection on the other hand, to be capable of endowing the skeleton of the work with the life-substance of his experiential scheme. If we seek for a context within which the origin of the aesthetic sense and of the vital sense differentiate, as well as fuse into each other, develop and then interlace, so that we may clarify their respective source-dependencies and proficiencies within man's self-interpretative life-course, we must search for it not in its already-made product. The completed work of art itself is the result of innumerable sedimentations of the meaning-bestowing (and meaning-inventing) processes. We must seek it in the context establishing the means of this meaning-inventing, first, within their specific significance• proficiency with respect to the significant role of each (e.g., bringing into source-experience the significant streak of the aesthetic sentiment, or that of projecting objectifying patterns in which the dispersed elements of func• tioning would come together - the role of the intellect - or of the sentiment infusing benevolence into the reactions toward the Other, etc.); second, by bringing these heterogeneous sense-proficiencies into common molds of experience and initiating the specifically human phase of self• interpretation. I have emphasized already that this phase of man's self• interpretation resides beyond the response to vital needs; it responds to man's innermost propensity in endowing his life-course with his own invented meaning. Thus, in order to understand the significance of art within life we have to reach the creative context of the Human Condition, from which the antennae spring, fuse, or intertwine, assuming complementary roles, and with which the existential script of man is spun. Consequently, it is within the creative context of the Human Condition that we situate our probings into the aesthetic significance of art, art-sentiment, and art-language. To bring back the literary genres into the focus of attention when, on the one hand, extensive studies of them abound, and, on the other hand, the distinction between genres is no longer clear in contemporary literature, would have seemed obsolete were it not for two factors. One is that, together with some recent literary critics, we cannot fail to observe their persistent residual vestiges in contemporary literature; and this in spite of the ever• evolving transformations of the literary styles, conventions, and forms which, after classic standards have long since been broken, have in contemporary literature reached the point of almost total rejection. Having abandoned the THE THEME XV formal precepts of excellence, with their standards and criteria of structure, expression, language, etc. (e.g., in Western literature, sonnet in poetry, three unities in drama, etc.), contemporary literature seems, in fact, after centuries of probings into the "ideal" models and then, the quest after perfection of their implementation, to have gained complete freedom of expression. Nevertheless, the basic distinctions, which spontaneously differentiate the literary art from its origin in cultural history, remain valid. The epic, lyrical, tragic, comic - poetic and prosaic - distinctions here, as always, a forming/differentiating role in literary art, making it "art," and making it "literary." First, the lyrical, tragic, comic, or epic sentiment pervades the literary expression of man. It pervades the feeling and its cadences, language with its vocabulary, and syntax as well as the formal arrangements of elements of the literary work, and make, from what otherwise would be a "matter of fact" mode of information, an aesthetic (literary) one. Second, each of them finds its own occasion to gain prominence and an appropriate way to exercise it. In fact, the lines or forms of the final embodiment in literary work may largely differ from the clasic ones. Nevertheless, the basic differen• tiation into epic, dramatic, or poetic genres through an emphasis upon one or other type of significant experience that is inventively ciphered, on the one hand, and upon the creative form which the conveying of its significance demands, on the other hand, affirm their residual but seemingly unavoidable role. The aims and means to assume this role are adjusted in a complex and selectively extended span of the creative process. Stretching further, it appears that inventively projecting a network of aesthetic significance - that causes the straightjacket of the strictly vital significance to burst open and expand - is postulated by the virtualities of the Human Condition. They are the means for the expansion of human life. On these analyses, the Human Condition actualizes itself, beginning by life's germinal state, and progres• sively through the individual's self-interpretative effort, and is revealed by the forms of human existence which it has projected. The probings into the ways in which what we call the "" appears in the most interesting contrast between its function with respect to classical and contemporary literature when we investigate this function within the creative context, its unique task in this meaning inventing and projecting effort. The epic, poetic (lyric), tragic genres serve as coordi• nates between the virtualities of the human condition and man's specific selfinterpretative endeavor through the aesthetic significance of life. Through the infinite range of possible fluctuations in the structural crystallization of aesthetic significance, in which the elements of signifying complexes either xvi ANNA-TERESA TYMIENIECKA loosen their expressive poignancy due to the contrary emphasis, or intensify it to the full measure by becoming the focus of concentration of all expres• sive means - length, temporal spread, experiential purity, alternation of cadences, there persists an "objective/subjective" coordination between the "feeling" of aesthetic experience and its "significance." The differentiated genres may be considered the essential antennae which organize, transfuse, and transmit the aesthetic experience by means of the literary work. They thereby lead to the actualizing of the virtualities of the Human Condition into a full-fledged expansion of existential significance. Within the creative context of the Human Condition we bring all the seem• ingly disparate issues which literary work in the perspective of its diversifica• tion into epic, tragic and poetic (lyric) genres raises to an ultimate common reference schema. The epic, lyric, tragic moments of the aesthetic significance of life run by their ramified threads through the very heart of literary en• deavor, literary work and its interpretative· understanding. The creative context serves as a pipeline for the philosophical findings drawn from their singular investigations about man's actualizing his Human Condition by way of art, and also offers the literary analysis an access to "understanding" its own final significance.


1 Cf. The Philosophical Reflection of Man in Literature, Analecta Husserliana, Vol. XII, 1982. 2 Cf. A-T. Tymieniecka, 'Poetica Nova: The Creative Crucibles of Human Existence and of Art', Analecta Husserliana, Vol. XII, 1982, pp. 1-93. 3 Cf. The Philosophical Reflection, op. cit. 4 Cf. 'Poetica Nova', op. cit. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

This volume is a selection of studies presented at three annual seminars and conferences of the International Society of Phenomenology and Literature (1980-1982). Warm thanks are due to our collaborators and to the dedicated staff of the World Phenomenology Institute for their care in preparing the details of these events. Mrs. Marie Lynch, the executive secretary of the Institute, who directs its day to day activities and keeps track of the various concerns of our collaborators, deserves our thanks in the first place. My assistant, Miss Rebecca Ramsay, is to be thanked not only for taking charge of the practical problems of carrying out the conferences but also for her expert typing of some of the material in this volume. Mr. Webb Dordick, our senior editor, deserves our continuing appreciation. Thanks are also due to Mr. Louis T. Houthakker for his editorial help.