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Genius in FranceAn Idea and Its Uses$
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Ann Jefferson

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780691160658

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691160658.001.0001

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The Return of Genius

The Return of Genius

Mad Poets

(p.204) Chapter 17 The Return of Genius
Genius in France

Ann Jefferson

Princeton University Press

This chapter chronicles the return of genius as a viable object of thought, this time in the context of madness. It first turns to the conjunction between neurosis and full-blown psychosis where genius commands greatest attention in the latter half of the twentieth century. This is explored in the case of Friedrich Hölderlin, who becomes the object of theoretical attention in the early 1950s. The chapter shows how, in the early years of theory Pierre Jean Jouve (a poet-essayist, more than a theorist in the late twentieth-century style) and Maurice Blanchot have examined the case of Hölderlin, with supporting illustration from other examples.

Keywords:   mad poets, madness, Sigmund Freud, Friedrich Hölderlin, Pierre Jean Jouve, Maurice Blanchot, French theory, insanity, psychoanalysis

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