Poetics of the same: a philosophical poetic recourse into sameness
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This study endeavours to investigate the philosophical and poetological dimensions, the philological origins, and significant philosophical-literary representations of the Same. It also assesses sameness as a philosophical and poetological modus operandi; that is to say, it analyzes the ways in which the Same operates in different types of discourses both as an object of investigation and as an agent of (poetic) thought. The concept of the Same or the operation of sameness as the philosophical question par excellence will be considered in the development of Continental philosophy and philosophical poetics from classical antiquity to Postmodernism, and its transposition into poetry. The elaboration of the issue of sameness encompasses any philosophical inquiry which seeks to establish the essence of Being and make it susceptible to a general, unifying principle: as a search for an underlying element; for a metaphysical unity or universal, preceding division or difference and amounting to the harmony in the Universe; or for a transcendental absolute totality. Postulations of the pure conceptual difference are likewise examined as part of the elaboration of sameness, and will be viewed as indispensable for revealing the genuine plenitude of sameness. Part One traces the inception of sameness as a concept of pure identity, amounting to the harmony of the Universe by virtue of the operations of belonging (Presocratics), participation (Plato), and emanation (Plotinus), anchored in the relationships between the One and the many, between the Whole and its parts, between the Original and the copy. Part Two inquires into the limits of postulating sameness in terms of pure identity and points to two possible solutions to this problem: a philosophical-aesthetic digression from sameness (Kant and related aesthetic theories of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries) and the return to sameness as an absolute totality in Part Three (Schelling and Hegel). Part Four investigates the re-postulation of sameness as pure Difference (Nietzsche, Heidegger, Derrida), hence the entire re-organization of thought in terms of the other. Part Five analyzes the transposition of sameness from 3 philosophy into the poetic language of repetition, using Rilke’s Sonnets to Orpheus as its prime poetic example. It will be argued that the philosophical displacement of the Same from a concept of identity into that of difference does not amount to an abandonment of its plenitude, but rather points to the need for a precarious balance between sameness and difference, the simultaneous quest for unity and the absolute singularity of the other. This balance, it will be argued, must be sought for in every genuine creation.
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