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Lyric OrientationsHölderlin, Rilke, and the Poetics of Community$
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Hannah Vandegrift Eldridge

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780801456954

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801456954.001.0001

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Malevolent Intimacies

Malevolent Intimacies

Rilke and Skeptical Vulnerability

(p.118) 4 Malevolent Intimacies
Lyric Orientations

Hannah Vandegrift Eldridge

Cornell University Press

This chapter focuses on how Rainer Maria Rilke addresses the problems of finitude. He believed that the problems of finitude is connected to problems of how to write poetry; thus, he repeatedly staged the question—in letters, prose texts, and some of his poems of how he, in his era and in the face of the historical, social, and political as well as literary problems it poses, can write poetry. In contrast to Friedrich Hölderlin, however, Rilke was not directly engaged with the contemporaneous epistemological explicators of these problems. Instead, he examined authors and artists influenced by empiricist psychology while maintaining his own questions of how art is, can be, or should be made.

Keywords:   Rainer Maria Rilke, finitude, Friedrich Hölderlin, empiricist psychology, poetry

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