Abstract and Concrete Modernity

William S. Allen

in Aesthetics of Negativity

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print April 2016 | ISBN: 9780823269280
Published online September 2016 | e-ISBN: 9780823269334 | DOI:

Series: Perspectives in Continental Philosophy (FUP)

Abstract and Concrete Modernity

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The style of Blanchot’s writing can be understood by examining the changes that take place between the two versions of Thomas l’Obscur, where the later version appears to be more abstract. Doing so brings out the relation between fiction and everyday language in terms of the purported concreteness of the latter, which leads to the question of how creative language negotiates the relation between its materiality and its autonomy, a tension found in the thought of Lefebvre and the Surrealists. This opens up the issue of the nature of literature in modernity given its proximity to the prosaic, which is given dialectical form in Adorno’s thinking as the relation between the artwork and the commodity.

Keywords: abstraction; commodity; concreteness; modernity; prose

Chapter.  12049 words. 

Subjects: Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art

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