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(Pre-)Romantic Constructions of Nature / Martina Domines Veliki

By: Domines Veliki, Martina.
Material type: ArticleArticlePublisher: 2017Description: 283-301 str.Other title: (Pre-)Romantic Constructions of Nature [Naslov na engleskom:].Subject(s): 5.14 | 6.03 | 6.10 | Nature ; the self ; politics ; money ; Wordsworth ; Rousseau | socialism, capitalism, yugoslavia, borovo, financialization, class In: The Errant Labor of the Humanities: Festschrift Presented to Stipe Grgas str. 283-301 Summary: This paper was fostered by my reading of Stipe Grgas’s book chapter “The Use of Nature: An 18th Century Case Study” in The Constructions of Nature (1994). In this book chapter Grgas claims that “nature” acts as a kind of empty signifier, a mere “prop within a context of argumentation” (202).This paper aims to explore the ways in which “nature” could act as a construct in romanticism taking into account Raymond Williams’s contention that “nature” is “perhaps the most complex word in the language” (221). Two authors are taken as representatives of a supposedly new ways of perceiving nature in the romantic age: Rousseau, as a pre- romantic writer, important for the ideas of “inner nature” and “the state of nature, ” both closely connected to the idea of “a natural man” and Wordsworth, who aligns himself with Rousseau when pointing out in the famous 2nd Preface to Lyrical Ballads that “Poetry is the image of Man and Nature” (Stillinger 454), thus putting man and nature on an equal footing and advocating a kind of psycho-natural parallelism that would be one of the romantic topoi in his best poetry.
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This paper was fostered by my reading of Stipe Grgas’s book chapter “The Use of Nature: An 18th Century Case Study” in The Constructions of Nature (1994). In this book chapter Grgas claims that “nature” acts as a kind of empty signifier, a mere “prop within a context of argumentation” (202).This paper aims to explore the ways in which “nature” could act as a construct in romanticism taking into account Raymond Williams’s contention that “nature” is “perhaps the most complex word in the language” (221). Two authors are taken as representatives of a supposedly new ways of perceiving nature in the romantic age: Rousseau, as a pre- romantic writer, important for the ideas of “inner nature” and “the state of nature, ” both closely connected to the idea of “a natural man” and Wordsworth, who aligns himself with Rousseau when pointing out in the famous 2nd Preface to Lyrical Ballads that “Poetry is the image of Man and Nature” (Stillinger 454), thus putting man and nature on an equal footing and advocating a kind of psycho-natural parallelism that would be one of the romantic topoi in his best poetry.

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