Literature and Ideas

Literature, ideas, learning and Knowledge.

Literature, ideas, learning and Knowledge.

linedivider“Con la cattiveria, l’uomo si vendica contro la società per i limiti che essa gli impone. Questo desiderio di vendetta anima tutti. Il selvaggio può mozzarti la testa, può mangiarti, torturarti, ma ti risparmia le continue punzecchiature che a volte rendono la vita quasi intollerabile in una comunità civile”.
(S. Freud in The glimpses of the great di G.S. Viereck 1930)

The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.
Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractacus Logico-Philosophicus-


linedividerE poi come ci ricorda Eliot, per creare bisogna distruggere e del resto il ruolo del filosofo, come ci ha insegnato Montaigne, è quello di insegnare a morire, infatti chi non teme la morte, non accetta neanche la schiavitù e può quindi lottare per una sempre maggiore libertà. Del resto poi questo è anche un’idea fondamentale della psicanalisi che portava appunto Freud a dire:

“La morte fa coppia con l’amore. Insieme governano il mondo. Questo è il messaggio del mio libro Al di là del principio di piacere. Da principio la psicanalisi riteneva che solo l’amore fosse importante. Oggi sappiamo che la morte lo è altrettanto. Da un punto di vista biologico ogni essere vivente, per quanto intensamente la vita bruci in lui, anela al Nirvana, anela alla cessazione di quella “febbre chiamata vita” (E.A. Poe For Annie), anela al petto di Abramo. Il desiderio può essere mascherato dalle più varie circonlocuzioni. Ciò non toglie che lo scopo ultimo della vita sia la sua stessa estinzione!….(op.cit.)

Carl William Brown


linedividerI libri sono vivacemente e vigorosamente produttivi come quei favolosi denti del dragone che piantati qua e là possono far germogliare uomini armati.
John  Milton

Books are not absolutely dead things, but do contain a potency of life in them….I know they are as lively and as vigorously productive as those fabulous dragon’s teeth and being sown up and down, may chance to spring up armed men. John Milton

There can be no transforming of darkness into light and of apathy into movement without emotion.
Carl Jung

Literature refers to the practice and profession of writing. It comes from human interest in telling a story, in arranging words in artistic forms, in describing in words some aspects of human experiences. So we can read Literature for Knowledge, for Pleasure, for Relaxation or as a therapy to the nuisances of life!

Literature, painting, sculpture, theatre, film – all these forms are part of people’s efforts to transcend reality. It might be for the purpose of moralizing, of presenting a “higher truth,” or simply to entertain, to replace the theatre of the real with pleasant fantasy.

The difference between literature and journalism is that journalism is unreadable and literature is not read.
Oscar Wilde

Imaginative literature in the service of rebellion, or satanism, quickly sinks  into exhibitionism or obscurity. Imaginative literature as the expression of a deeply apprehended truth, poetry which interprets to a man the myth of his own age, can in the hands of Dante, of Shakespeare, of Cervantes, of Camoes and of  Goethe, help to raise the level of a whole civilization.
J. M. Cohen

Most definitions of literature have been criterial definitions, definitions based on a list of criteria which all literary works must meet. However, more current theories of meaning
take the view that definitions are based on prototypes: there is broad agreement about good examples that meet all of the prototypical characteristics, and other examples are
related to the prototypes by family resemblance. For literary works, prototypical characteristics include careful use of language, being written in a literary genre (poetry,
prose fiction, or drama), being read aesthetically, and containing many weak implicatures.
Jim Meyer

A hallmark feature of human intelligence is its adaptability, the ability to invent and rearrange conceptions of the world to suit changing goals and environments. One consequence of this flexibility is the great diversity of languages that have emerged around the globe. Each provides its own cognitive toolkit and encapsulates the knowledge and worldview developed over thousands of years within a culture. Each contains a way of perceiving, categorizing and making meaning in the world, an invaluable guidebook developed and honed by our ancestors.
Lera Boroditsky, “How Language Shapes Thought,” Scientific American, Feb. 2011

The most noble and profitable invention of all other, was that of speech, consisting of names or apellations, and their connections; whereby men register their thoughts; recall them when they are past; and also declare them one to another for mutual utility and conversation; without which, there had been amongst men, neither commonwealth, nor society, nor contract, nor peace, no more than amongst lions, bears, and wolves.
Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan

The Nature of Literature
The first problem to confront us is, obviously, the subject matter of literary scholarship. What is literature? What is not literature? What is the nature of literature? Simple as such
questions sound, they are rarely answered clearly. One way is to define “literature” as everything in print. We then shall be able to study the “medical profession in the four-
teenth century” or “planetary motion in the early Middle Ages” or “Witchcraft in Old and New England.” As Edwin Greenlaw has argued, “Nothing related to the history of civilization is beyond our province” ; we are “not limited to belles lettres or even to printed or manuscript records in our effort to understand a period or civilization,” and we “must see our work in the light  of its possible contribution to the history of culture.”
Rene Wellek and Austin Warren
linedivider–   Lo studio della letteratura;



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