Rhyming Sensation in "Mont Blanc": In Response to Rob Mitchell

Printer-friendly versionSend by email

In response to Rob Mitchell, this essay extends his argument regarding the Deleuzean elements of "Mont Blanc" in two key respects. It argues that the poem engages the sublime both on the level of its philosophical content and the mode of its articulation, drawing attention to the level of sensation in philosophical argument through its easily overlooked pattern of irregular rhyme. Poetic articulation is a literary counterpart to sensation as a pre-condition for the experience of the sublime, so that the distinction between poetic language and content can stand in for that between sensation and other faculties. Moreover, by dramatizing the violence of the sublime, which the embodied speaker must at once resist and accept, the poem also foregrounds a non-teleological, unresolved conflict of the faculties. In this respect, the poem anticipates Deleuze's critique of Kant in Difference and Repetition, effectively performing a Deleuzean intervention into the poetics of the sublime.


Audio Categories: 

Audio Author: