Sunday, 15 June 2008

arcades project excerpt

Baudelaire_ Fusées2

Throughout Baudelaire's writings, from the early novella La Fanfarlo, to an article on Mme Bovary, published in 1857, to the intimate journals, Fusées, and the prose poems, Le Spleen de Paris, there are allusions to fluid or mixed gender identities in contexts that are themselves a mixture of approval and anxious fascination. The motifs of androgyny and hysteria are intermixed and associated with heightened capacity for imagination, hypersensitivity, various forms of impotence and an inclination to excess. The hysterical or androgynous figure, whether male or female, is thus paradoxically assumed to have an increased capacity to enter into expanded states of consciousness that nourish the poetic imagination and to suffer from the inability to give them verbal form through the exercise of the "male" imagination and its "voice."


Merteuil said...

An Aesthetics of Movement: Baudelaire, Poetic Renewal, and the Invitation of Dance - French Forum 31:3 French Forum 31.3 (2006) 23-43 Muse Search Journals
Suzanne F. Braswell

This Journal Contents An Aesthetics of Movement Baudelaire, Poetic Renewal, and the Invitation of Dance Suzanne F. Braswell University of California, Santa Barbara In a letter written to Arsène Houssaye, which appears in its finished form as the liminal "Lettre-Dédicace" to his Petits Poëmes en prose (1862), Charles Baudelaire speaks in the name of a poetics and of an aesthetics born of an increasingly mobile modernity. Specifically, he declares his dream of a "prose poétique," which he describes in terms that draw attention to the mind's movement. He asks: "Quel est celui de nous qui n'a pas, dans ses jours d'ambition, rêvé le miracle d'une prose poétique, musicale sans rythme et sans rime, assez souple et assez heurtée pour s'adapter aux mouvements lyriques de l'âme, aux ondulations de la rêverie, aux soubresauts de la conscience?" (146). The attentive reader cannot help but notice the importance Baudelaire places on movement relative to poetic thought and prose. Moreover, he articulates movement through the vocabulary of dance. We notice, for example, that he describes consciousness as interlacing figures forming "innombrables rapports," which suggest the ephemeral patterns a spectator would see emerging and dissolving on a ballroom floor.

xtina said...