The wound and magic of the impossible. 
Baudelaire, Proust and the tradition of astronomical/erotic 'adynaton'

Franco D’Intino

Abstract


The essay reconstructs the ancient poetic tradition of astronomical ‘adynata’, where the observation of the sky becomes expression of erotic suffering. After a short excursus on this kind of adynata from ancient Greek and Latin poetry to the 17th century, the essay focuses on two modern authors who seem to revive this tradition: Baudelaire and Proust. Baudelaire in his “poèmes en prose” (Spleen de Paris) refers to two “impossible” events: the black sun and the moon pulled out of the sky by the magic art of the Thessalian witches. Proust never explicitly mentions these two ‘adynata’, nevertheless he makes extensive use of an astronomical imagery which embodies his poetics. In the Recherche the loss of the obiect, and the feeling of im-potence generated by this event, is ‒ exactly as in ancient poetry and in Baudelaire ‒ the origin of lovesickness as well as creativity.


Keywords


Adynata; Poetic tradition; Astronomical imagery; Baudelaire; Proust;

Full Text:

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13125/2039-6597/3647

NBN: http://nbn.depositolegale.it/urn%3Anbn%3Ait%3Aunica-24882

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