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Language Without SoilAdorno and Late Philosophical Modernity$
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Gerhard Richter

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780823231263

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: March 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fso/9780823231263.001.0001

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The Polemic of the Late Work: Adorno' Hölderlin

The Polemic of the Late Work: Adorno' Hölderlin

(p.172) Chapter 11 The Polemic of the Late Work: Adorno' Hölderlin
Language Without Soil

Robert Savage

Fordham University Press

This chapter engages the problem in Theodor W. Adorno's late work—both in Friedrich Hölderlin and as a general problem of aesthetic theory. The chapter explores questions through a selective reading of “Parataxis: On Hölderlin's Late Poetry”. Polemic and rescue, it will be argued, are the twin poles between which “Parataxis” oscillates and that delimit its field of argumentation. Their relationship generates a ferment in which each term passes imperceptibly into the other. On the one hand, the polemic figures a kind of loving hate that mortifies in order to save: no resurrection without the stench of death. In Gnostic terms, the polemic affords a glimpse of divine truth through its absolute negation of the fallen world of the demiurge, anticipating the rescue of the particular in the universal envisaged by Adorno's regulative “utopia of knowledge”.

Keywords:   Theodor W. Adorno, Friedrich Hölderlin, theory, poles, parataxis, truth, negation

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