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3 - Feeling Thought

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 November 2020

Eric Falci
Affiliation:
University of California, Berkeley
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Summary

Is there a way to understand a poem as an intertwining of thought and feeling? If every art, according to Pater in The Renaissance, has “its own peculiar and untranslatable sensuous charm,” “its own special mode of reaching the imagination,” and “its own special responsibilities to its material,” then can we also understand poems to offer unique instantiations of thought, which are inextricable from their imaginative, sensuous, and affective dimensions? Previous chapters have considered the value of poetry as a type of linguistic attentiveness and play, as a practice of vocalization and inscription, and as a way to map the complexities of subjectivity. This chapter follows up on those considerations in order to think about how poems might think, and about how both writers and readers might approach a poem as a crystallized yet open process of thinking and feeling. Not only the presentation of a speech act, nor the account of a subjectivity in formation, nor the formalized play of language, a poem can also depict and spur a process of thought that is, as it were, felt. Via readings of poems by Tracy K. Smith, Tongo Eisen-Martin, and Lisa Robertson, this chapter aims to show how poets map and process thought, and how readers think their way through poems.

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The Value of Poetry , pp. 89 - 119
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2020

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  • Feeling Thought
  • Eric Falci, University of California, Berkeley
  • Book: The Value of Poetry
  • Online publication: 20 November 2020
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108676915.004
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  • Feeling Thought
  • Eric Falci, University of California, Berkeley
  • Book: The Value of Poetry
  • Online publication: 20 November 2020
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108676915.004
Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

  • Feeling Thought
  • Eric Falci, University of California, Berkeley
  • Book: The Value of Poetry
  • Online publication: 20 November 2020
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108676915.004
Available formats
×