Download Borders of a Lip: Romanticism, Language, History, Politics by Jan Plug PDF

By Jan Plug

Explores the position of language, background, and politics in Romantic literature and concept, from Kant to Yeats.

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It is thus that the sublime is a sign. This sign is only an indication of a free causality; however, it has the value of “proof ” for the phrase that affirms progress, since the spectating humanity must already have progressed in culture, through its “manner of thinking” the Revolution, in order to be able to make this sign. This sign is progress in its present state . . ] (75) What ultimately takes place in Kant is a displacement not merely of the sign of history from the historical scene, from world-historical events and their Borders of a Lip Pt.

17 This is the story of the selfinstitution of the law; and as such it is the story of the activity of the symbol itself no less than it is of critical activity. 18 Still, it is by no means clear that a full development of what kind of an understanding of philosophy and the political this analogy produces is ever worked out, in Kant’s oeuvre, to be sure, but no less so in Lyotard’s reading of it. Nor has the linguistic nature of the relation been adequately accounted for. The beginning of an answer might well be presented in the Argument that opens Enthusiasm.

Kant’s conception of history thus discloses the very conditions according to which history becomes historical. This takes place only when historical causality is made a field open to intervention from past, present, and future. While Lyotard’s reading of Kant traces how, as a result of the reformulation of history in terms of indeterminate temporal relations, the cause is simply an Borders of a Lip Pt. 1 36 9/18/03 8:55 AM Page 36 Borders of a Lip intervention into time, either past or future (56), he continues to outline a much more literal intervention or coming-between: “[L]a Begebenheit ne doit pas être elle-même la cause du progrès, mais seulement l’indice du progrès, un Geschichtszeichen” [(T)he Begebenheit must not itself be the cause of progress, but only the sign of progress, a Geschichtszeichen (sign of history)] (56).

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