New York-Paris: Whitman, Baudelaire, and the Hybrid City by Laure Katsaros PDF

By Laure Katsaros

ISBN-10: 0472118498

ISBN-13: 9780472118496

As ny and Paris started to modernize, new modes of leisure, corresponding to panoramas, dioramas, and images, appeared poised to take where of the extra advanced different types of literary expression. Dioramas and images have been invented in Paris yet quickly unfold to the US, forming a part of an more and more common idiom of the spectacle. This courageous new global of technologically complex yet crudely mimetic spectacles haunts either Whitman's imaginative and prescient of latest York and Baudelaire's view of Paris. In New York-Paris, Katsaros explores the photographs of the mid-nineteenth-century urban within the poetry of either Whitman and Baudelaire and seeks to illustrate that, by way of projecting a picture of the other's urban onto his personal, each one poet attempted to withstand the it sounds as if impossible to resist ahead momentum of modernity instead of create a paradigmatically satisfied mix of "high" and "low" culture.

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Additional resources for New York-Paris: Whitman, Baudelaire, and the Hybrid City

Sample text

The crowd cannot be delineated, de‹ned, or broken down into its separate components. It over›ows the boundaries of sense perception, going beyond the limits of our ‹eld of vision—beyond the limits of a poetic eye. Its chaotic vastness exceeds our ability to comprehend it, and annihilates our sense of proportion. In this sense, the crowd triggers the same extreme aesthetic reaction as the sublime, in the de‹nition of Edmund Burke: “In‹nity has a tendency to ‹ll the mind with that sort of delightful horror .

But no eighth old man appears: there is nothing but the unstoppable and pointless process of multiplication. ”27 Like the ocean, the crowds of the city fall under a category that Baudelaire called l’innombrable: namely, that which cannot be numbered, divided, or contained. Baudelaire’s seven old men offer a small-scale image of Whitman’s own struggle with number. By turning their attention to the city, Baudelaire and Whitman must re-create, in words, the shock of thousands of bodies, faces, and eyes—the terror of endless multiplication.

We no longer know whose voice we are hearing, just as we no longer know what is being watched by whom. In “A Broadway Pageant,” Whitman is hypnotized by the Japanese embassy, just like everyone else in the crowd, but he is also observing the dense crowd watching the parade on Broadway. The Broadway pageant is a panoptic spectacle of mutual surveillance: it is almost impossible to disentangle the crowd outside the parade from the crowd inside it. ” The eye of the crowd is self-referential; the city is looking at itself, just as Whitman sees multiple images of himself in the crowd.

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New York-Paris: Whitman, Baudelaire, and the Hybrid City by Laure Katsaros


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