S-Space College of Humanities (인문대학) English Language and Literature (영어영문학과) 영학논집(English Studies) 영학논집(English Studies) No.28 (2008)
제유(Synecdoche) 대 반투명(Translucence): 폴 드만의 코울리지 읽기에 대한 문제 제기
A Critique of Paul de Man's Reading of Coleridge
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 인문대학 영어영문학과
- 영학논집, Vol.28, pp. 22-53
- symbol ; allegory ; organism ; the subject and the object ; self-dulpication ; residual difference
- In "The Rhetoric of Temporality" Paul de Man criticizes the then prevailing Organicist misreading of Wordsworth. But he does not make the same efforts for Coleridge, taking him to be the origin of Organicist criticism. This leads him to criticize Coleridge's usage of such figurative or literary concepts as symbol, allegory, imitation, and analogy out of context. De Man contends that Coleridge's symbol is continuous with sense and even loses its materiality in the pursuit of identical transcendence. Yet, Coleridge places symbol, in which ideal nature extends into artists' sensation or language, over allegory, the superficial translation of abstract notions into abstract perception. In fact, de Man misunderstands Coleridge's figurative concepts by neglecting his philosophical context. Coleridge's symbol, neither transparent nor opaque, has some contradictory structure in which the transcendental universal half hides and half reveals itself by inflecting itself entering into the particular; nature's light or free principle is expressed into limited linguistic form by self-irony. Also, in contrast to de Man's interpretation that Coleridge employs imitation as sensory mimesis, Coleridge's use of imitation actually suggests that the artist duplicates the inner principle and action of nature and that he recreates nature by the functioning of his special imaginary power, through which the contraries pose disproportional balances between infonote freedom and finite form.
There exist more fundamental philosophical bases in Coleridge's figural concepts, such as organic unity, the subject and the object, and the absolute.
Investigating the innermost we can uncover residual or latent difference resisting integration in his philosophical notions. The entire identity of the
absolute cannot endure without self-duplication. And the latent difference reveals itself through becoming or artistic creation and turns surplus difference, which tends to centrifuge itself even to the extent of anxiety or ruin. For instance, the heterogeneous motif within the combination of opposite elements in "An Aeolian Harp," The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, and "Kubla Khan" projects itself too much to return to the higher coalescent or circuitous narrative. In conclusion, de Man's interpretation omits the substantiality of Coleridge's inner difference, deficient in cubic reading. That is, de Man commits selfcontradiction because he does not acquire light due to his blindness to Coleridge.