The Doppelganger: Literature's Philosophy (Hardback)Dimitris Vardoulakis (author)
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The Doppelganger or Double presents literature as the "double" of philosophy. There are historical reasons for this. The genesis of the Doppelganger is literature's response to the philosophical focus on subjectivity. The Doppelganger was coined by the German author Jean Paul in 1796 as a critique of Idealism's assertion of subjective autonomy, individuality and human agency. This critique prefigures post-War extrapolations of the subject as decentred. From this perspective, the Doppelganger has a "family resemblance" to current conceptualizations of subjectivity. It becomes the emblematic subject of modernity.
This is the first significant study on the Doppelganger's influence on philosophical thought. The Doppelganger emerges as a hidden and unexplored element both in conceptions of subjectivity and in philosophy's relation to literature. Vardoulakis demonstrates this by employing the Doppelganger to read literature philosophically and to read philosophy as literature. The Doppelganger then appears instrumental in the self-conception of both literature and philosophy.
Publisher: Fordham University Press
Number of pages: 336
Weight: 610 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 25 mm
A bold and complex treatment of a classic literary figure that will make
this book standard reference for years to come, both in what it
contributes to modernist criticism and in how it reconceptualizes the
terrain of contemporary literary theory.
. . . Extremely complex and ambitious, bringing together philosophy, literary theory and criticism, and proposing pregnant and rich readings of philosophical and literary texts belonging to different epochs and traditions . . . * -Critical Horizons *
. . . A tour de force. . . [Vardoulakis'] study of the figure of the doppelganger is ambitiously conceived, and involves an interrogation of material that cuts across literature, criticism and philosophy. * -Colloquy: text theory critique *
This provocative and richly corroborated thesis, one might conclude after having read the book, deserves attention and further investigation. * -Orbis Litterarum *
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