Abstract

Drawing on commentary by De Man, Benjamin, Poulet and Bersani, I argue that Baudelaire's Harmonie du Soir and Mallarmé's Hérodiade set out not only to testify to modernity's constitutively fragmentary, and implicitly violent, experience of time, but also to create new norms of conceptual and formal coherence for experiencing such fragmentation positively. As Benjamin puts it, they offer not the experience of shock itself, but "the experience for which the experience of shock has become the norm." Specifically, I suggest that they elevate the experience of the Kantian sublime to a definitively modern experience, an exemplary norm of our era.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1080-6598
Print ISSN
0026-7910
Pages
pp. 1015-1042
Launched on MUSE
2003-09-24
Open Access
No
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