Ralph Freedman (essay date 1967)
SOURCE: Freedman, Ralph. “Symbol as Terminus: Some Notes on Symbolist Narrative.” Comparative Literature Studies 4, nos. 1-2 (1967): 135-43.
[In the following essay, Freedman studies the methods of narrative structure and deformation employed in the Symbolist prose poem.]
An analysis of the achievement of the French Symbolist Movement exacts both a strong measure of awe and a sharp critique. The grounds for awe are evident: for many reasons, not the least among them the towering figure of Mallarmé, symbolism was able to render the clearest answer to the modern confrontation of self and world, to give the most precise shape to the self-conscious concern with the...
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