The Historical Shiver: Flaubert, Michelet and Keats

Jürgen Pieters

in Speaking With the Dead

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print June 2005 | ISBN: 9780748615889
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748652020 | DOI:
The Historical Shiver: Flaubert, Michelet and Keats

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This chapter describes the contributions of Michelet, Gustave Flaubert, and John Keats in the Romantic age. Flaubert felt connected to the depths of his soul with the people who paced the same ground centuries ago. Michelet was fascinated by the experiences that Flaubert characterised as historical frissons. Michelet's diaries indicate that his love for Madame Dumesnil strengthened his belief that the practice of the historian entails a fundamental service to the dead. Keats coined the phrase ‘negative capability’ to refer to the same poetic faculty that Wordsworth addressed. The chapter illustrates that Keats's ode intervened in a contemporary debate about the cognitive value of works of art.

Keywords: Michelet; Gustave Flaubert; John Keats; Madame Dumesnil; dead; negative capability; Wordsworth

Chapter.  9239 words. 

Subjects: Literary Theory and Cultural Studies

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